Coronavirus and Funeral Ceremonies

If you are arranging a funeral now, it may be some comfort to know that restrictions are easing in crematoriums and cemeteries.

Your local IoCF celebrant knows the guidelines specific to each venue and will work with you to create a beautiful, loving ceremony that celebrates the life of your loved one while still reducing the risk of transmission of the coronavirus.

Most crematoria and cemetery chapels still have a limit on the number of people allowed to attend.

However, you may find that webcasting is offered at a reduced price or even free of charge and IoCF celebrants have lovely suggestions about preparing ceremonies that will help everyone watching online feel completely included.

IoCF celebrants can also suggest ways of celebrating the life of the person you have lost that do not involve going to a cemetery or crematorium. These could include:

  • an online ceremony where everyone meets via a video platform such as Zoom (the ceremony is conducted as normal, with music, tributes and readings but everyone remains in the safety of their home);
  • an informal online vigil consisting of music, readings and a sharing of memories;
  • a self-conducted ceremony prepared by the celebrant and read by you and others in your household whenever convenient for you;
  • a memorial service to be prepared now and held when lockdown is eased still further.

The initial meeting with an IoCF celebrant will usually still happen via phone or video call. This is for the safety of both of you. Although you do not meet face to face, you can find out about your IoCF celebrant by clicking ‘find a celebrant’ on our Home page and typing in the name, or you might ask them to email a photograph if it helps you to picture the person who is supporting you.

Our celebrants work closely together and, even if your original celebrant falls ill, he or she will arrange for a colleague with the same high professional standards to take the ceremony in their place – one less thing for you to worry about.

Please be aware that the above information may change, possibly at very short notice, as Covid-19 infections increase and decrease in particular areas. The IoCF is committed to helping you say goodbye to your loved one in a way that is absolutely true to their memory and that feels right for you but our members may need to change the way they work in response to changing guidelines.

To find an IoCF celebrant local to you, please go back to the Home page and click on Find a Celebrant.

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