Paola Minussi lay-humanist celebrant

The role of the humanist celebrant: what to ask and what to expect

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When planning a significant event, such as a wedding or a memorial ceremony, the choice of celebrant plays a crucial role in shaping the experience. In particular, humanist celebrants emerge as professional figures capable of customizing and guiding ceremonies without religious connotations. But what should we ask, and what can we expect from such a celebrant?

The first interview

The process begins with an initial consultation. A humanist celebrant should be open to preliminary meetings to understand the desires and values of the clients. During this phase, it is appropriate to seek clarification about their experience and style, ensuring they can create a tailor-made event.

Personalization and flexibility

Personalization is at the heart of ceremonies led by humanist celebrants. Ask the celebrant how much room there is to personalize the ritual based on your preferences. Flexibility in adapting the ceremony to your needs is a fundamental attribute to look for.

Celebration of life. Celebration of love

Being aware of the celebrant’s humanist approach is crucial. Humanists focus on human values, ethics, and the celebration of life. Ask how they intend to incorporate these principles into your ceremony and how they will ensure it reflects your vision.

Experience and references

Ask for details about their past experience and request references. A solid base of satisfied clients can provide a reliable indication of the celebrant’s skills. This is particularly important for significant events such as weddings or memorial services.

Logistic details

Ask for logistical details, such as the estimated duration of the ceremony, planned activities, and how they will coordinate with other vendors or participants. A clear understanding of these aspects will help ensure a smooth ceremony.

Fees and contract

Discuss fees clearly and make sure you have a contract outlining the details of the agreement. This includes the date and time of the event, the services included, and any specific provisions.

Accuracy in all tax aspects

The fact that the humanist celebrant has their own VAT number and ensures, consequently, the issuance of a regular invoice for every payment you make is an additional guarantee of seriousness and professionalism. It also protects you from any potential issues and sanctions by the relevant tax authorities. A celebrant who truly wants to be “humanist” operates in accordance with the legal and tax regime precisely because they are part of a conscious and active citizenship and wish to abide by its rules.

Intertek certification

This certification of good professional practice is an additional requirement for seriousness and professionalism, especially for professions like that of the humanist celebrant, which in Italy do not yet have their own professional register. To obtain this certification, the celebrant has undergone exams and demonstrated knowledge of the best practices that characterize the profession. Furthermore, this certification is renewed annually, ensuring it is always valid and up-to-date.

One ceremony a day… keeps rush at bay

Clearly ask the celebrant if, on the agreed date for your ceremony, they will be exclusively available to you or if they anticipate having a second (or third!) commitment on their agenda. While anything is possible, for your peace of mind and to avoid any pressure on the celebrant in case of unforeseen circumstances, I would ask for exclusivity for that day unless it is clarified that any additional commitments will not compromise the quality of their performance for you.

What to expect during the ceremony

During the ceremony, you can expect the humanist celebrant to deliver a meaningful speech that reflects the agreed-upon values and ideals. They may include symbolic rituals, personalized readings, or other elements that make the event unique.

Take your time and ask all the questions you need

In conclusion, choosing a humanist celebrant is a thoughtful decision that should reflect your vision and values. Asking detailed questions during the initial consultation and establishing clear communication will ensure that the ceremony is an authentic reflection of the occasion.

Do you want to know more?

Write to me and book your free video call.

I will be happy to answer all your questions and see if I am the customized humanist celebrant for you!

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