For several months now, three members of Glastonbury Goddess Temple have been putting together plans to offer Goddess-focused funerals, both in Glastonbury and elsewhere in the UK.
“We are all priestesses, as well as independent funeral celebrants, and feel passionate about choice – the choice we all should have to celebrate the end of our life, and the lives of those we care about, in a way that reflects our beliefs, and the way we have lived our lives”, said Lorraine Pickles, one of the organisers. “For Goddess loving people, that may include a ceremony that reflects a belief that death is but a returning to Goddess. And for those who see death as a return to the shores of Avalon, this may be reflected in a variety of ceremonies both for those close to death, and for those who have crossed the veil.”
The new funeral service went live at Imbolc, 1st February 2018, and initially offers celebrancy for both funerals and memorial services. There will also be a service for people who would like their ashes, or those of a loved one, scattered or buried in a cherished location here in Glastonbury or elsewhere in the UK.
In addition, Marisa Picardo, another of the organisers, will offer a Death Doula service. “A Death Doula is sometimes called an End of Life Companion or a Soul Midwife”, Marisa told us, “And this is intended to offer support, comfort and reassurance to allow a dying person to experience the death that she or he wants, whether at home or in hospital or a hospice.”
Future projects include offering services for those who wish to plan their funeral ahead of time, and also to encourage home funerals, with all the help and support people need to provide both a more flexible and natural experience, which is likely also to prove more affordable.
“We’re based here in Glastonbury”, said Geraldine Charles, who provides both administrative and celebrancy services, “but we’re willing to travel. We are also actively seeking other qualified and experienced priest/ess celebrants who wish to celebrate Goddess funerals and invite them to contact us.