It was interesting to follow the unfolding debate amongst funeral directors and celebrants in response the blog post ‘C of E raises funeral fee to £160’ here.
If you are one or the other, have you paused to wonder what on Earth any consumer would have made of it?
Yes, look at it from that point of view.
What is the impact of this description of a celebrant’s fee: “Just a quick slab of cash into the back pocket”?
What is the impact of: “Sadly I do not believe anyone I see taking funeral services is providing a good or fair service to the bereaved families I serve“?
What about the woman celebrant doing up to ten funerals a week when other celebrants say they wouldn’t dream of doing more than two? Is she a greedy guts just in it for the money? How many funerals is too many? How can those doing just two a week, and spending all that time, possibly make it financially worth their while? Why can’t they be paid what they’re worth?
The debate revealed that, far from adopting a collaborative, joined-up approach to the creation of what is, for the consumer, the most important part of the process, the funeral itself, funeral directors and celebrants (religious and secular) seem to come from different worlds, a proportion of each from Hell.
What does this say about the value of the funeral as an event?
Why do funeral directors not embed celebrants and pay them properly? This was one of the best, most constructive contributions to the debate.
What emerged from the exchanges was a deeply depressing spectacle of dysfunction and unpleasantness.