Humanist Celebrant, a secular humanist officiant, the secular ministry endorsed in all 50 states by The Humanist Society, an educational arm of The American Humanist Association
InSight certified Life Tribute Professional
What kind of officiant is a Humanist Celebrant?
A Humanist Celebrant creates a meaningful secular ceremony that is unique and personalized. Ceremonies may reference and include cultural traditions, music and secular rituals. Bespoke or custom written ceremonies focus on the individual or individuals’ reasons for commemorating the occasion, remembering a milestone, opportunity for sharing with others.
Humanist Celebrants are professional, inventive, optimistic and empathetic.
Humanist Celebrants embrace a progressive philosophy of life founded on reason, compassion and a respect for human rights.
Anita Peters is a Humanist Celebrant endorsed by The Humanist Society, the ministry of The American Humanist Association. She is also certified by The InSight Institute as a secular Funeral Celebrant. She is on the Steering Committee of The Humanists and Freethinkers of Fairfield County, a chapter of The American Humanist Association.
When should I contact Anita?
For a Wedding or other similar occasion
Ideally, soon after you have confirmed a date for your wedding or other milestone events. You will want to meet with Anita to determine whether you and she are suited for this important collaboration.
For a Memorial or Life Tribute Ceremony
Please do not hesitate to contact Anita at any hour of the day to discuss your loss and thoughts for honoring the deceased. Her certification as a Funeral Celebrant by The InSight Institute is respected by funeral homes around the country.
“I am available to you, members of the family, close friends, and the funeral director during this time while we are arranging a meaningful memorial.”
There is no prescribed time when a life tribute ceremony must be held or arranged. Oftentimes, it is a relief to the family, when end of life wishes have been discussed beforehand or even written down.
“I am available to help begin this conversation and can even facilitate and/or write keepsake memoirs.”
Where does Anita officiate?
Anita is based in Wilton, Connecticut and will officiate anywhere in Fairfield County in Connecticut.
For other locations in Connecticut, northern Westchester County in New York, Manhattan and elsewhere, there will be an additional mutually agreed upon reasonable transportation charge based on distance and commuting time.
How much experience does Anita have?
Anita has been officiating at weddings since 2012 when she was appointed a Connecticut Justice of the Peace in New Canaan. Upon her appointment as a Humanist Celebrant in 2014, she officiated in a dual capacity as a Justice of the Peace and Humanist Celebrant. Her appointment as a Justice of the Peace ended when she moved to Wilton in 2016.
Anita has been officiating at memorials and other life cycle events since she became a Humanist Celebrant: She was re-endorsed by The Humanist Society for 5-year term in 2017.
How much does a wedding cost?
This will depend upon the location, size of the wedding and wedding party, vision for the day, and level of involvement. From the simple ($400) to the elaborate ($800).
How much does a memorial cost?
This will depend upon Anita’s involvement in the arrangements with the bereaved family, funeral home or deceased. A life tribute ceremony may include the selection of music, readings, momento, the writing of the eulogy and obituary, and arrangement for a scattering or burial of cremated remains.
At this difficult time when so many things must be taken care of, Anita provides a calm comforting presence to the family that the deceased will be honored, remembered and respected in a meaningful life-affirming memorial.
Where can I find out more about Humanism?
Will Anita officiate at LGBTQ events?
“I am happy and honored to participate in the secular celebration of anyone without prejudice to gender, race, belief or non-belief.”
Who chooses a Humanist Celebrant as an officiant?
Anyone who is looking for an alternative to a traditional religious ceremony that is personal, warm, inclusive, multi-cultural and maybe even unorthodox.
Anyone who identifies as a secular humanist, humanist, atheist, agnostic. Humanist Celebrants are inventive, open, professional, and knowledgeable.
Why haven’t I heard about Humanist Celebrants before?
Celebrancy is relatively new to the United States - about 30 years old.
In the United States, like many countries, the institution of marriage is recognized separately in both religious and civil ceremonies. For many years, religious marriages were not considered legally binding and clergy were not allowed to sign marriage licenses. Civil ceremonies were simple affairs only performed by Judges and local Justices of the Peace usually at town halls. Today in the U.S., recognized clergy can perform simultaneously a religious ceremony and also submit the civil legal binding marriage licenses.
According to the Pew Research Center, almost 24% of adults in the United States in 2014 are religiously unaffiliated, agnostic or atheist.
More and more couples are seeking personalized alternatives to religious ceremonies to formalize their commitment. More and more families are seeking secular life tribute ceremonies.
In 1990, The Humanist Society became the educational arm of The American Humanist Association and created a secular ministry of Humanist Celebrants to provide meaningful ceremonies for humanists, secularists and anyone seeking an alternative non-religious based ceremony.
Humanist Celebrants are located in every state and can be found throughout the English speaking world. In Australia, 80% of all ceremonies are performed by celebrants.
What is the difference between a Humanist Celebrant and Justice of the Peace?
A Humanist Wedding celebrates the union of a couple providing opportunities to express love and commitment to each other and to share with those in attendance the significance of the day for them.
A Humanist Memorial is a life tribute secular ceremony honoring the deceased and offering the bereaved opportunities to remember, console and comfort one another.
Can you help me plan (even write) my memorial and end of life ceremony before my death?
Oftentimes, it is a relief to the family, when end of life wishes have been discussed beforehand or even written down.
“I am available to help facilitate this conversation with family members, collaborate with you on creating a memorial program and/or write keepsake memoirs.”