A Fond Farewell
Helen J Stout
Independent Funeral Celebrant
Bespoke funeral ceremonies created with you
to mourn a loss, celebrate a life and bring comfort to the living
Hello, my name is Helen, and I'm an experienced funeral celebrant conducting ceremonies across Bristol, Bath, South Gloucestershire, Gloucestershire and sometimes beyond these areas too.
I work with several funeral directors in my local area, including the Memorial Woodlands near Bristol; I endeavour to keep my workload to a maximum of 2 services a week so that I can continue to give as personal a service as possible.
You will find information on my background and the service I can offer you in the pages below. If you have any questions or would like further information, please don't hesitate to contact me.
When my mother died 6 years ago, I knew that I wanted someone who'd known her to conduct the service so that it would reflect her life, her interests and beliefs. And just as important to me was that her grandchildren were at ease with what would be their first ever funeral. So I decided to do it myself, and was surprised at how much I enjoyed putting the service together and conducting it for my mum and my family. Another few months went by before I discovered that the role of Funeral Celebrant even existed and that I could actually do this as a job! So, with the encouragement of friends and family, I took the plunge and enrolled on a training course with the Fellowship of Professional Celebrants.
Prior to this, my jobs had varied from
working in schools with children who
had additional needs to the library
service; this included several years working
in a prison library, where my main role was to work with the Storybook Dads charity, enabling children to keep in touch with their imprisoned parents. In my spare time I love escaping in our campervan to a quiet place with a view, hot chocolate and a good book. I also enjoy splashing in puddles with our grandchildren and have written short stories and led a few women's retreats too.
In my role as a celebrant, I take great pleasure in giving each family what I'd wanted to give to my mum - a ceremony created in collaboration with them to reflect the life, personality and beliefs of their loved one, where everyone feels welcome and at ease.
A Symbol Of Hope
A butterfly lights beside us like a sunbeam
And for a brief moment its glory
And beauty belong to this world.
But then it flies again
And though we wish it could have stayed
We feel lucky to have seen it.
The Service I Offer
I can assist you in tailoring a funeral to your family's particular needs and wishes by:
spending time with you and your family to listen to your memories about how your loved one touched your lives; providing suggestions for poetry, readings and music where needed; giving guidance on involving children in the planning, aiding their
understanding of the ceremony and hopefully putting them more at ease on the day
I will then weave all these threads together into a unique and personal funeral ceremony, a beautiful parting gift and fitting tribute to help you to say a fond farewell
You touched our lives
During your time here with us,
And memories of you
Will live on in our hearts
Longer after we bid you
A fond farewell
some of the comments I've received from families
Thank you so much for Thursday, I don't know how we'd have managed without you! The eulogy was beautiful, so well written with your choice of words, and you managed to make sense of what we told you. Now that deserves a medal!
I'm so very grateful that you helped us deal not only with a very difficult funeral, but much more too, in providing amazing support for me and the girls. Your mix of empathy, together with the practical aspects, was so perfect; I've had many comments on how beautiful and appropriate it was.
You are one of the kindest people I have ever met and I'm so grateful for the day you walked into our lives. You encapsulated all that Auntie Joan was perfectly during the service, she would have loved you! Thank you for being there for us - you helped to make the unbearable bearable.
Thank you so much for the part you played in our celebration of Jenny's life yesterday. The service was perfect and such an accurate reflection of our darling girl, but your wonderful delivery of it brought it to life. Your calm and relaxed manner helped everyone there to also relax and be natural. I know without a doubt it's just the service that Jenny would have wanted.
Thank you so much for the beautiful graveside service that you conducted for my mother Evelyn. You painted the perfect picture of her with a warmth and a personal touch. We all appreciate the effort you put in to make Mum's burial a special celebration of her life!
What can I say! You helped make a day to remember. You were so kind and caring I felt as though I'd known you for years. My friends and relatives were so impressed with the whole day and that you made the service so personal and special. Thank you does not really sum up what I feel I should say - you just made the day feel right. Bless you.
Thank you for your support and skill in helping with Sally's funeral yesterday. For the children and I it was the most difficult day of our lives, but we had the satisfaction of feeling at the end of it that we'd achieved what we, and more importantly Sally, had wanted. You are a key part of that achievement and we are very grateful.
I've just received your service script through the post, it just confirms yet again how fortunate we were to have you as the celebrant. Your words, kindness and everything you did for us were exceptional, and so many of the attendees expressed their appreciation and admiration for the way in which you conducted the service.
Get in Touch
Please email me using this form
if you would like any further information.