Secular Grief Resources
Professional Grief Therapy or Counseling
The Secular Therapist Project
If you are seeking professional grief support, we recommend The Secular Therapist Project. This project, which provides confidential online referrals to professional counselors and therapists, many of whom are trained and experienced in grief, trauma, and other related fields. While the project may not have a therapist listed in your area, many of the professionals listed will make phone appointments as well as office appointments. All of these professionals are committed to providing purely secular services to the clients referred to them by the Secular Therapist Project.
Recommendations for Theist Chaplainson Providing Secular Grief Counseling for Nontheists
The Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers, in collaboration in consultation with Grief Beyond Belief, provides these brief recommendations for chaplains providing counseling for non theists who are experiencing grief or trauma. If chaplaincy is being made available to you but there is no Humanist chaplain available, please consider giving your chaplain this set of recommendations.
Secular and Humanist Funeral Officiants
Celebrant Foundation and Institute: Celebrant Locator
Listing of celebrants trained to create individualized funeral and memorial ceremonies. While the celebrants themselves are not necessarily secular, their code of ethics requires that their own beliefs not play a role in the ceremonies they lead.
Ontario Humanist Society Officiants
Directory of Humanist officiants in the province of Ontario, organized by region.
Humanist Association of Toronto: Humanist Ceremonies
List of Humanist officiants affiliated with the Humanist Association of Toronto.
phone: 03 528 5220
British Humanist Association: Find a Celebrant
For those in the UK, the British Humanist Society offers a geographic directory of Humanist funeral celebrants.
Steve Emmett, Humanist Celebrant
British Humanist Association
North and East Yorkshire, The Humber
phone: 01653 658799 / 07804450742
Center for Inquiry: Find a Secular Celebrant
Listing of trained Secular Celebrants organized by state.
Humanist Society: Humanist Celebrant State Listing
Humanist Celebrant State Listing organized geographically.
Jaime Goswick, Humanist Clergy Member
Jonathan Figdor, Humanist Chaplain
The Humanist Community at Stanford
Steven Gibson, CFI Certified Secular Celebrant
Mark W. Thomas, CFI Certified Secular Celebrant
Tim Bailey, Humanist Celebrant
email: firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
District of Columbia
Jason Torpy, Humanist Celebrant
President, Military Association of Atheists & Freethinkers
Also serves Delaware, Maryland and Virginia.
Joe Beck, Humanist Chaplain
Humanists of the Treasure Coast
Dr. Annalise Fonza, Humanist Celebrant
Also serves Missouri and Massachusetts.
Rabbi Adam Chalom, PhD
Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation, Lincolnshire, IL
Cheri Harris, CFI Certified Secular Celebrant
Reba Boyd Wooden
Director, CFI Secular Celebrant Program
Nancy L. Zummack, Life-Cycle Celebrant (certified by the Celebrant Foundation and Institute)
John Kiel, CFI Certified Secular Celebrant
Louisville, KY area
Mark Nebo, Humanist Celebrant
Also serves Northern Virginia and Washington, DC.
Megan Barber, Life-Cycle Celebrant (certified by the Celebrant Foundation and Institute)
Western Massachusetts and beyond
Greg M. Epstein
Humanist Chaplain at Harvard University
Dina Stander, Life-Cycle Celebrant (certified by the Celebrant Foundation and Institute)
Available for travel throughout New England.
Culturally Jewish or fully secular funerals
The Birmingham Temple, Farmington Hills, MI
Dale Handeen, Humanist Chaplain
Audrey Kingstrom, Humanist Celebrant
Raúl Martínez, Humanist Celebrant
Dorry Bless, Life-Cycle Celebrant
Also serves metropolitan New York and Eastern Pennsylvania.
Amanda Knief, Humanist Celebrant
Also serves New York, Eastern Pennsylvania, Delaware and Iowa.
Marilee Harrison, Humanist Celebrant
Roy Bates, Humanist Chaplain
Eastern, Western and Northern New York State
Kim Kirkley, Life-Cycle Celebrant (certified by the Celebrant Foundation and Institute)
New York and beyond
Rabbi Peter Schweitzer
The City Congregation for Humanistic Judaism, New York, NY
Christopher Shelley, Life-Cycle Celebrant (certified by the Celebrant Foundation and Institute)
New York City
Han Hills, Humanist Celebrant
North Carolina and South Carolina
August Brunsman, Humanist Celebrant
Chris Kenney, CFI Certified Secular Celebrant
Paul Andor Nagy, CFI Certified Secular Celebrant
Margaret Downey, CFI Certified Secular Celebrant
phone (office): 610-793-2737
phone (cell): 610-357-9432
Aleta Ledendecker, Humanist Celebrant
Victoria Gettman, Humanist Celebrant
Secular Funerals and Memorials: Information and Sample Ceremonies
Freedom From Religion Foundation: Secular Memorials and Funerals Without God:
Sample service and suggested readings.
Secular Seasons: Secular Funerals and Memorials
Advice on ceremony content and finding a secular celebrant.
Funeral Consumers Alliance
A nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting a consumer’s right to choose a meaningful, dignified, affordable funeral. The website is full of useful, easily-understood information for helping you plan a funeral and not be taken advantage of while grieving.
Green Cemeteries in the USA and Canada
A list of cemeteries that provide green (no embalming, minimal environmental impact, biodegradable materials) burial.