The Differences Between a Funeral Director and a Celebrant


One of the things we are most proud about here at Krause Funeral Homes is our ability to meet the needs of all families in Milwaukee, Brookfield, and New Berlin. Living and serving in such a diverse community means we have the honor of helping people from many different cultures, traditions, and religions. We realize families only have one chance at planning a final farewell, and we are here to help design a tribute that is both dignified and unforgettable.

In order to exceed the expectations of every family who walks through our doors, we offer the services of funeral directors and certified celebrants. While they perform many of the same functions, including coordinating and conducting various aspects of a funeral, there are notable differences. Here, we’ll explain the roles of each so when the time comes, you can decide on the best fit for you and your family.

A funeral director works with the family to arrange details and handle the logistics of the funeral. Oftentimes, families who choose a funeral director prefer a traditional religious service. Both parties work together to establish the location, dates, and times of the visitation, funeral or memorial, burial, and reception. Funeral directors also coordinate funeral transportation, help prepare obituary notices, and handle the paperwork involved with a person’s death.

If you wish to have the funeral service at one of the Krause Funeral Homes locations, you can have a funeral director officiate the service or bring in your choice of clergy. Over the years, many families have told us that hosting everything under one roof with one of our caring funeral directors at the helm greatly simplifies the planning process.

A certified life celebrant is an alternative to a funeral director or member of clergy. Celebrants such as Jeannie Davis at Krause Funeral Homes act as a kind of master of ceremonies, opening the service, transitioning between different elements, and providing general leadership and direction. A celebrant meets with the family, asking questions about their loved one, their traditions, culture, and personality. Celebrants are trained to create a meaningful farewell through incorporating unique stories, interests, and memories. At Krause, we make sure our celebrant has access to a library of resources, including readings, music, ceremonies, and other personal touches.

While celebrants are often favored by those who do not want a traditional religious funeral, people of faith are also known to request their services. A family may have a member of the clergy lead a prayer or give a sermon, then incorporate a celebrant for other elements like sharing a special reading, antidote, or personal stories.

When choosing an officiant, the most important thing is that you and your family feel comfortable so that, together, we can create a meaningful service that truly tells the story of a life. We invite you to reach out to our professional, compassionate team to learn more about our services.

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