Autumn – a time of beauty in loss and renewal

Posted on November 13, 2013 by Judy | Filed under: Celebrant, Funerals, Symbolism

Autumn….   So full of metaphor, which gives me inspiration when I am writing funeral ceremonies.   I know the fog of grief that descends can make it can seem as though – just like when we lose a loved one – everything is shutting down: the long hours of darkness, leaves falling, birds migrating, blossom all but disappeared, there are signs of renewal and hope if we look for them.  Berries to nourish wildlife through the winter, many birds have returned to our gardens, seedpods have burst and embedded the seeds into the earth to burst forth in spring.  Flower bulbs, looking dried and lifeless will gladden our hearts with their beauty in the spring….

And so it is with a celebrant led funeral.  Although we are in the midst of grief, and it seems like the end of everything, we had the joy of knowing the person who has died – they had a life to be celebrated, and for that we can feel gladness and gratitude that we shared time with the person now gone.

Buddha is credited with saying that, “What for the caterpillar is the end, for the butterfly is merely the beginning”.  A lovely sentiment.

butterfly and lavender


I also  love this quotation from John Muir – I find there is nothing like a good walk in the countryside to renew energy and help restore hope.

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn. — John Muir

Autumn Leaves

If you are in the areas around Banbury/Brackley/Stratford/Leamington/Daventry, and you would like me to help you say goodbye to your loved one, please get in touch.  It would be my privilege and honour to be of help.