What is a Life-Cycle Celebrant®?

Article by  Cristina Kollet (used with her permission)

We are Life-Cycle Celebrants (R). Each of us has worked hard, making sacrifices of effort, time, and tuition to earn that title. That title matters.

Charlotte Eulette (the International Director of the Celebrant Foundation and Institute (TM) and others worked hard to get that little (R) added to our title. It means that we are something unique and special among officiants of all kinds. We should wear our titles with pride! It is often easier to smile and nod when people assume we are clergy. I’ve been called “reverend” at all kinds of ceremonies and events, not just weddings. People assume that ceremony is strictly the purview of clergy, but we know ceremony belongs to everyone.

I understand that most of us who perform weddings are also required to carry another title, in addition to Life-Cycle Celebrant(R), in order to legally marry our couples. We may have to be ordained or a clerk or marriage commissioner. But we should still use the designation Life-Cycle Celebrant(R) whenever possible*, when speaking to people, so that we can spread the word about what we offer- PERSONALIZED ceremonies for EVERYONE, regardless of their beliefs, heritage, gender, or the occasion. [*Of course, sign the paperwork according to your legal designation.]

I know this can be awkward. Everything stops. It’s as if the whole room grows silent and you have to explain, “yes I am [ordained, a clerk, a commissioner], so this marriage IS legal, BUT, primarily,I identify myself as a Life-Cycle Celebrant(R) because it is through that extensive training that I learned how to create these beautiful, personalized ceremonies for people like you [ you, your son/daughter, grandchild, coworker, friend]. Life-Cycle Celebrants(R) believe everyone deserves the dignity of a ceremony that is personally meaningful and reflects who they are.

Most people just smile and nod. Others will check again that it was all right for you to do the ceremony. Some will really get it, ask to know more, tell their friends, even become Life-Cycle Celebrants(R) themselves.

If we don’t tell people who we are, they will never know our services exist as an option for – not just their weddings but also when we welcome children, say farewell to a loved one, and all of the life events in between.

If we don’t speak about being Life-Cycle Celebrants(R) with confidence, people will not recognize our legitimacy, our training, our skill.

And the more people who know about us, the more support we will have in gaining that legal designation for weddings, so that we no longer have to jump through loopholes and wear two hats. People will know and ask for Life-Cycle Celebrants(R) and they will do so with confidence.

The effort towards legal recognition has started in New Jersey. But the goal is for us to have it everywhere eventually-in every state and province and country where we practice. That won’t happen if we don’t share who we are and do so with confidence, with passion, and with the belief that people need what we have to offer.

So I ask you all-as your colleague, as your Head of New Media (working to spread the word on the Web), and as one of the Institute staff (teaching a new class of Life-Cycle Celebrants(R) to wear our title with pride)-no matter what your specialty, please tell people that you are a Life-Cycle Celebrant(R)   *This was written by Cristina Kollet and re-posted with her permission.

**  I am proud to be Cristina’s colleague and a graduate of the Celebrant Foundation & Institute ™.

Genevieve Munoz, Life-Cycle Celebrant (R)