For most people looking into training to become a celebrant, knowing how long it takes to become a celebrant is often high up on the agenda. It’s important to know how much of an investment of time and money will be needed for you to become a professional celebrant and having this information to hand will help you plan your celebrant training budget and schedule.
How do you define a celebrant?
A professional celebrant is someone who helps people to celebrate and commemorate life’s most important events through the use of ceremony and ritual. A certified celebrant is a skilled person who can help couples to celebrate their wedding, or renew their vows, can help families to welcome their children and help the bereaved to say goodbye to friends and family members. Certified celebrants can also lead a whole host of other types of ceremonies from divorce ceremonies to gender transition ceremonies. From housewarmings to corporate building blessings. Basically any life event that one feels is worth celebrating and commemorating should be celebrated and commemorated!
Whilst training to become a celebrant is not compulsory in some countries, it is always recommended. Creating, crafting, writing and performing ceremonies requires a huge amount of skill. It requires openness, patience, great communication skills, foresight, compassion, ceremony insight and knowledge. And whilst many people possess many of these skills naturally, it can be difficult to know how to use these skills in the best way possible for being a celebrant. And this is why celebrant training is strongly recommended, where not compulsory.
Celebrant training helps people to learn how to use their inherent and learnt skills as a celebrant. It prepares you for your work as a celebrant and gives you an incredible foundation with which to build and develop your celebrant career. Celebrant training gives you a wonderful starting point and also enables you to become a part of a supportive celebrant community of other trainees and graduates. Because being a wedding or funeral celebrant is not a solo effort. The more support and guidance you have from within the celebrant community , the more success and happiness you’re likely to achieve.
When you have decided on what type of celebrant training you want to do or what type of celebrant training course you want to take, this will determine how long it takes to become a celebrant. You will also need to decide if you want to be a marriage celebrant, funeral celebrant, or both a wedding and funeral celebrant.
Can anyone be a celebrant?
A good celebrant can make being a celebrant look very easy! Good celebrants can lead people to think that all a celebrant does is stand up and talk about someone or something for thirty minutes or so, which thankfully any experienced celebrant will tell you is not the case. So although there is nothing stopping anyone from training to be a celebrant and in fact, anyone can be a celebrant, the best celebrants are those who in addition to excellent celebrant training, already have the necessary skills and aptitudes. The below lists includes some of the tops skills and abilities of celebrants:
- Good written and spoken communication
- Excellent listening skills
- Performance confidence
- Good IT skills and to be technologically literate
- A sense of humor
- Quick thinking
- Calm under pressure
How long does it take to become a celebrant?
As mentioned previously, the celebrant training course that you choose will determine how long it is before you are certified as a celebrant, and how you actually become a celebrant. Some celebrant courses will certify you as quickly as in 2-3 days whereas other courses, especially self-study online celebrant training courses have a longer duration. It usually depends on whether your celebrant course is being taught in a cohort or group with a set start date and end date, or whether your celebrant course is one which is designed for you to study at your own pace, with no rigid start or end dates.
Some people prefer the intensity and self-contained nature of residential celebrant training or celebrant training which is held in person, at a venue, for a specified period of time. There are also celebrant training courses which lead to celebrant diplomas and qualifications which some people often consider.
Others prefer the flexibility of online celebrant training. Some people are unable to take time off to commit to an in-person celebrant training course and due to family or work commitments prefer to study at their own pace, whilst being supported along the way. These are factors you will have to think about as you plan your own celebrant journey and decide which way of learning suits you best.
There is also the fact that no matter how long it takes you to become a celebrant ie to be certified as one, there is always a transition period for actually settling into the role of a celebrant. Becoming certified and becoming a celebrant go way beyond simply studying a celebrant training course.
We always advise our trainees to be patient as they start developing their celebrant business, because it can take time to get established as a celebrant and to see your first clients being booked. However, we also recognise how exciting it is to get started as a certified wedding or funeral celebrant and it can be hard to be patient!
As an example, this is why our celebrant training support does not stop at the end of the course. We recognize that those first few years of being a celebrant are absolutely crucial to your success as a celebrant and this is why our trainees are supported by us for as long as they work as celebrants.
Become a celebrant online
If you decide that online celebrant training is for you, you will then want to work out what kind of course is best for you. There are celebrant courses where although the training is online, the training is still live celebrant training. So this could mean that you might still do your course in a group or in a cohort, where the course starts and finishes over a specific time. Say a week or two, for example, or over the course of a month.
Then there is online celebrant training which combines live online interaction, with self-study via an online course platform. This usually means that much of the backbone of your celebrant training is contained online within a course platform which you can log into and study lessons and modules. Where the information is provided via videos and pdfs and you are required to complete tasks and assignments. Some online celebrant courses also have additional live online sessions too. This is exactly the set up for the Celebrants Collective online wedding and funeral training courses.
In terms of time frames and durations for how long it takes people who sturdy like this to become certified, as an example, our fastest trainees have become certified professional celebrants within ten days but on average our trainees take a few months to complete the course and all the assignments.
This way of training isn’t for everyone. It’s not for those who want to become a celebrant quickly or relatively easily. It's not for people who want to do an intensive, quick-win course. It’s for people who want to learn at a good pace, whilst having the time to really connect with what they're learning and to assimilate the course and our teachings. To study a thorough and thought-provoking course with long term gain.
Here at the Celebrants Collective, we believe that becoming a celebrant is actually a lifetime job. It’s a process that starts with a celebrant training course, but which deepens, expands and develops over time. It’s like learning to drive. You may pass your test easily (or not!) but it’s all the driving experiences after your test that make you a better, more confident and successful driver. It’s the same with being a celebrant. It’s all the support, wisdom, guidance and experiences you’ll have after your celebrant training which are just as important as your celebrant training itself.
Find out more about the benefits of online self study celebrant training courses.
All images by Anna Gazda Photography