Non-Religious Funeral Ceremonies.

by admin on March 29, 2011

Personal choice options for non-religious funeral tributes.

Non-Religious funerals represent a growing trend in Dublin life and all over Ireland.  But there is a persistent common perception that such funerals are difficult to arrange. Even the terminology can cause confusion – civil ceremony, humanist funeral, non-religious service, atheist funeral, secular interment – familiar terms in one way, but people then wonder if they indicate different types of funerals.

And so a family already in a vulnerable state of bereavement and loss can find it quite overwhelming.    The truth is that a meaningful non-religious funeral is easy to arrange with the guidance of your Funeral Director.


This website is designed to take off the shroud of mystery, giving you clarity, insight and real information; explaining how your Funeral Director can provide you with expert guidance in all aspects of non-religious funerals.   The different funeral terms – humanist, atheist, agnostic, secular, civil – basically offer the same thing – a Funeral Service which commemorates the life and values of the deceased person without a religious element to the proceedings.

Dublin Funeral Directors have been arranging non-religious funerals for many years.  Now that they are relatively more mainstream, some Funeral Directors are very well placed to accommodate diversity and options.  Stafford’s are a long established north Dublin firm and their newly opened Portmarnock Funeral Home is a large expansive space, which is particularly suitable to a Civil Funeral.  Jennings of Coolock can also cater for large attendance.  Both of these premises have ample car parking facilities also.


As a family, the main thing to remember is that your family funeral can be as personal and as customised as you wish.  Your Funeral Director will offer you great guidance as to how best commemorate your dearly departed loved one.  You will see from talking to the Funeral Director that a non-religious funeral can be every bit as meaningful and as the more traditional service.


Location – where best should we conduct our Humanist Funeral Service?

This is one of the key decisions you will make, but the Funeral Director will be on hand to assist you.  A lot will depend on the wishes of the deceased and the family.  A non-religious funeral generally takes place either in the Funeral Home, the family home, the Crematorium, or the Municipal section of the Graveside.  Sometimes, a combination of the above works well – for example, part of the service at the Funeral Home and another service at the Crematorium.


However, you may well prefer to have the entire Service at the Funeral Home, with just a short time at the Crematorium.  People don’t always realise that this is an option.  It can be very advantageous – unlike the Crematorium, where the time slots can be an issue, the Funeral Home will be made available for as long as the family need it for the entire service.  Some chapels of repose can be quite small, so bear that in mind when making your choice.  When designing their new premises at Portmarnock, Staffords were mindful that a large spacious Sanctuary of Repose offers peace of mind to the family arranging a Humanist Funeral.

Funeral Service Coordinator:

A good Celebrant or Coordinator is a vital part of a Civil Ceremony – a person who conducts the proceedings by calling on the people who plan to speak about the departed relative. The Celebrant will also introduce the music to be played or poetry to be read.  Talk to your Funeral Director about whether you wish to elect a family member to conduct the proceedings or if you would prefer the Undertaker to organise this aspect of your service.  Most Funeral Directors have specially trained staff that are well versed and experienced in putting ceremonies together.

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