About Celebrants

A Celebrant is a non-denominational, multicultural, interfaith ceremony officiant. Celebrants are educated and trained in ceremony tradition, creation and performance. The Celebrant movement began in the early 1970s in Australia and since then Celebrants have performed over one million ceremonies worldwide. The Celebrant Foundation & Institute in the U.S opened it’s doors in June 2001. Celebrants focus on personalizing each ceremony to reflect the needs, beliefs and values of the client, we serve everyone. Celebrants come to the table with no agenda except to listen to and bring to life their client’s visions. You, the client, are in charge of and own your ceremony. I am a Triple Certified Celebrant so I have graduated from the Weddings, Funerals and Family Ceremony Courses. As a Celebrant I offer a no-obligation interview to see if I am the right officiator for your occasion, we can meet in person or via Skype or phone.

To book an interview or ceremony consultation use the cart below or call, e-mail or FB message Helena.
530-913-0186, info@lookwithininstitute.com
Check or money order: Look Within Institute, PO Box 137, North San Juan, CA, 95960
Skype: helena.g.montelius

To learn more about Celebrants and our services visit: www.celebrantinstitute.org

“I give you this ring
as a pledge of constant love.
             As it circles your finger
             so will love always circle you.”

Renewal of Vows
Commitment Rituals
Self or Spirit Marriage Ceremonies

As a Celebrant I support Same Gender, Interfaith and Multicultural and Green Weddings. Celebrant are trained to respectfully blend and balance elements from different faith traditions and cultures. Celebrants also write your unique love story, based on a questionnaire you fill out, and use that as a narrative during the ceremony. This gives the wedding a very personal, unique flavor. Few things are more special than creating a ceremony to honor, celebrate and announce to the world that special, sacred love you share with someone. My ex-husband and I got married in a traditional church by a traditional priest in our native country, Sweden, and while we loved our wedding, our options for personalization were very limited. So I know the importance of being able to create a wedding ceremony that truly reflects who you are. Whether you would love to be barefoot by a river or in high heels at the Ritz, I am open and comfortable with any wedding style.

I love creating gorgeous, sacred wedding ceremonies and I love to include (if desired by the you, the client) a Self/Spirit-marriage element in all wedding ceremonies, as a symbolic remembrance of staying true to yourself and your spiritual practice or faith within the marriage.

What is a Self or Spirit Marriage? It is a ceremony where you marry yourself and or Spirit with the purpose of symbolically and ritually confirm a deeper commitment to yourself, your path, your spiritual practice and your truth. Self Marriage Ceremonies can be very powerful after a painful divorce or recovery process or before you get married to someone else.

Fee: starting at $300 for a short and sweet ceremony and going up to $1000 based on complexity, length and travel time.
Wedding Ceremony & The Work Consultations Packages include your ceremony of choice and 3 consultations where you learn how to use The Work as a couple.

“When I am gone, I shall go before you. Think of me not as a disconsolate lover.
Think of the joy it gave me to adore you. Of suns and stars you helped me discover.
And this still living part of me will come to sit beside you in the empty room.
Then all on earth that death has left behind will be the merry part of me within your mind.”

Celebrations of Life
Rituals for the Dying
Healing Ceremonies
Pet Funerals

griefsilverheartpocket-charmAs a Celebrant I support the growing Green and Home Burial Movement. Many people today feel called to be more involved in the dying and burial process of a loved one, helping them die with the dignity they deserve. That could involve having a ritual for the dying by the death bed, keeping the body at home for a vigil and/or having a ceremony at home, or some other place that feels sacred to the family, before or after a cremation.

The Green Burial Movement was started by people who longed for more green ways than embalment (filling the body with toxic formaldehyde) and concrete vaults. There are many alternatives today that I would love to discuss with you. Having lost my twenty-one-year old son, Jon, to an accidental overdose I deeply understand how important a meaningful, personalized Funeral/Celebration of Life is for healing and respecting the unique life of the deceased.

Celebrants are trained to write a personal eulogy and create a funeral that honors the deceased based on interviews with the family and close friends. I am comfortable with a traditional funeral in a funeral home, a short grave side disposition ceremony, any kind of Celebration of Life you would like to create and any location where you would like to honor your
loved one and maybe spread the ashes. There are so many options, please call or e-mail me for a discussion.

Fee: starting at $300 for a shorter ceremony up to $700, depending on the complexity, type and length of ceremony,
travel time and amount of writing. Call me for a discussion.
Funeral Ceremony & The Work Consultations Packages includes the ceremony of your choice and 3 The Work Consultations helping you move through grief and handle the stress of loss.

735cd3b1b41d256cb0d8a1dfb65ae845Family and Community Ceremonies
Mother/Father/Baby Blessings House Blessings
Coming-of-Age Processes and Rites
Opening & Completion Ceremonies
Adoption Ceremonies
Empty Nest Ceremonies for Parents
Divorce Ceremonies
Reconciliation Ceremonies
Community Healing Rituals
Milestone Birthdays
Retirement Ceremonies
Crown/Elder Ceremonies

These are some of the ceremonies I offer families and communities. There are so many occasions where a ceremony creates deeper connections in a family or community, gives us a chance to pause and reflect on a life passage, is an opportunity to give thanks and pray together and help us connect with the higher, spiritual purpose in life’s passages. A ceremony makes any occasion more special, beautiful and memorable. And it is fun for the whole family to plan, prepare and share a ceremony together. Children intuitively understand ritual and love to take part.

An Adoption Ceremony will help create deeper bonds within the family and make the child feel very special and safe.
House Blessings can be so much fun because all the guests can be involved and be part of the different ritual elements. For an elder that needs to move into a care facility or hospice a house farewell ritual can really help ease the transition.
Divorce Ceremonies are kind of new on the agenda but they are quickly gaining popularity because they help create a harmonious and respectful transition out of a marriage. If you have children a divorce ceremony can include an element of renewal of commitment as a family. Some families even get new family rings to symbolically show that even though mom and dad’s relationship is changing form, we are still committed to each other as a family.
Reconciliation Ceremonies are inspired by the restorative justice movement and can be incredibly powerful in a healing process between for example a crime victim and an offender, to mend a conflict between family members or to come to forgiveness after a betrayal.

A Healing Ceremony for someone who has been diagnosed with a chronic or deadly condition can be of tremendous support and help to overcome fear and stress.

Fee: varies a lot for family ceremonies depending on complexity, length, travel time and the amount of writing required, the usual price range is $200-500. Call or e-mail me for a discussion.

Ceremony Consultations

c9795a32983d695623f7fdb0ac6be5fdMaybe you already have someone, like a trusted family member or dear friend, to lead your ceremony or maybe you would like to lead it yourself. I can help you brainstorm ritual elements, assist you in creating a powerful personal ceremony, make sure the choreography flows and write the ceremony outline for you.

If you need help with writing any texts for your ceremony, like a eulogy, I would be honored to assist with that as well. I have access to a the Celebrant Library with inspirational ceremonial texts, poems, prayers and ritual elements from around the world.

Fee: starting at $100 for an hours consultation, up to $300 for a longer ceremony that includes multiple texts. I do consultation in person in the Nevada City, California area, or via Skype or on my free Conference call line if you are from out of town.

Some feedback from Sarah about her Empty-Nest Ceremony. We named it the White Feather Ceremony, since her three children had flown out of the nest and mommy was now ready to expand her own wings more.

“Helena gave thought to my situation and desire, did her own research and came up with a skeleton ceremony for discussion. Out of this we created how the event would flow. It was just enough structure to allow me to feel held and guided, but completely free to drop into my emotions and timing. On the day of my ceremony, at all times, Helena responded sensitively, intuitively incorporating how things were actually happening whilst keeping the thread of the intent of the ritual alive. Kudos to you, dear Helena! In particular I am grateful for the sincere and thought-provoking questions you gave me to ask myself in preparation for the event. They in themselves guided me through a deep process that greatly enhanced how much I could receive from the ritual and the transition itself.”