what’s the difference?
what’s the difference between a life-cycle celebrant and a religious officiant?
Certified Life-Cycle Celebrants® are professional ceremony officiants. Celebrants are educated and trained to use ceremony and ritual to commemorate the milestone transitions in the lives of individuals, families, communities, and organizations.
A celebrant’s mission is to co-create a ceremony that reflects the beliefs, philosophy, and personality of their clients. Celebrants have no agenda of what a ceremony should or must look like. It is through a thoughtful interview process that the Celebrant produces what is meaningful to each client. Please visit the Celebrant Foundation & Institute to learn more about life-cycle celebrants and the work we do.
what is the difference between a life-cycle celebrant® and clergy?
Religious officiants are typically ordained by a religious denomination as members of the clergy. These are persons ordained for religious services and rites. For example, a celebrant would not perform a Catholic communion or any Catholic sacraments; baptisms are also reserved for ministers, priests, preachers etc. There are also cultures that perform sacred ceremonies and rituals that a celebrant would not perform; however, they may collaborate with these faiths and cultures.
Celebrants offer an alternative for families of different traditions, cultures, and faiths by creating what is specifically meaningful to them. Celebrants are not based on any system of belief. The beliefs and values of the celebrant’s clients are what is important to the celebrant as they create personalized ceremonies. Some people who are marrying outside of their religious faith my choose to have a celebrant wed them because their own clergy may refuse. Others will choose a celebrant because they may not have any religious affiliation at all or consider themselves to be spiritual rather than religious. Recent Pew Research studies indicate a growing number of Americans are no longer connected to a specific religion, but still consider themselves to be spiritual or secular.