Writing A Eulogy? Write From the Heart

Important Steps In Writing a Great Memorial Tribute

If you must write a eulogy, write from the heart. The need to write a tribute such as this only comes when you have lost a loved one, and this makes the process innately difficult, but if you are truly honest about your thoughts and feelings as you put your words to paper, your eulogy speech will be a success.

Break It Down

Before you begin to write your eulogy, write out a plan. This will break down your task into small steps that will seem far less imposing. Each step will get you closer to a finished product, and by the time you are done, you will find that have also made great strides in dealing with your own grief.

 Step 1: Who Is Your Subject?

The character, personality, and life of the deceased is the center of your eulogy. Write about him and his accomplishments, passions, hobbies, and experiences. This seems obvious, but it is really easy to get caught up in poems, scripture, and ethereal concepts, while avoiding the need to face the real reason you are writing this speech: as a memorial tribute to someone you love and have lost. One great place is eulogiesmadeeasy.com.

Step 2: Who Is Your Audience?

If the audience is primarily a group of fraternity brothers or army buddies hearing your eulogy, write about brotherhood and camaraderie, but if you are speaking to a group that is primarily made up of family members, you should write about the bonds of family and tell stories of holidays and family gatherings. As you think about the audience for your eulogy, write for the general age group to whom you will be speaking, using poems, lyrics, and quotes that are relevant to your listeners.

Step 3: What Kind Of A Funeral Will It Be?

If the funeral is expected to be a traditional ceremony in a church or a churchyard, you will need to use appropriate language that may include a statement of faith and quotes from scripture. If the deceased was a person of faith, be sure to include this in the eulogy. Write about their beliefs and religious involvements. Include a scripture passage and perhaps a prayer.

If, however, the funeral is more casual, taking place in a home or in a hall, you may not feel comfortable including a religious slant to your resume. Write about your experiences with the deceased; share an anecdote that is amusing or something you feel illustrates the true nature of that person’s character and personality.

Step 4: What Do You Admire?

This is a time of tribute, so your eulogy should be positive and complimentary of the deceased. You will want to include praise in your eulogy. Write about those attributes you admired in the deceased. Write about his strengths, his accomplishments, and his successes. If you discuss weaknesses, be sure to frame them as endearing. This is not the time to critique the wrong decisions of the deceased.

 Step 5: Draw From Outside Resources

Once you have addressed the celebration of the life in your deceased in your eulogy, write a few words of comfort and hope simply for the sake of the mourners. They will want from you some assurance that all will be well. You do not need to use only your own words in your eulogy; write a prayer that pulls a quote from the Bible or a poem, or quote a song or a passage from a famous speech. As you consider the contents of your eulogy, write those words that truly express the way you feel about the loss of your loved one.

Sample Eulogies Offer Great Ideas For Composing Funeral Speeches

Learn To Honor The Deceased With The Written Word

Many sample eulogies are available online and in books to help you accomplish the daunting task of preparing a funeral speech. These examples will offer potential ideas for beginning and moving through an effective eulogy, and finally ending it. Templates are available for eulogies for family members, such as your mother, father, or siblings, or for friends, classmates, and co workers. Each set of sample eulogies will include a variety of openings for supplemental materials, such as poems, quotes, and prayers, as well as personal memories and anecdotes.

Poems

A variety of poets have written poems about death and about life that have become famous. Sample eulogies often include poems by Emily Dickinson, T. S. Eliot, or Robert Frost. However, you do not have to work with the classics. You may find a verse or two you like in a book or on a website, or you might use a poem you know was beloved by the deceased. Some sample eulogies will include contemporary poems, the writers of whom you do not know. As long as the words are meaningful, it does not matter who wrote them.

Song Lyrics

Of course, most song lyrics are poems, written to be set to music. If your friend or family member you are eulogizing loved music, or if you know of a song that is particularly reminiscent of the deceased, it is absolutely appropriate to include the words of the song in your eulogy. You may wish to provide a little background information or after your quote unless the words speak for themselves. If you are unsure of what song to use, you can find a variety of sample eulogies that use song lyrics or that suggest lyrics that would be appropriate for you to use.

Scripture Readings

When you are writing a funeral speech memorializing a loved one who was Christian or religious in any way, it is appropriate to include scripture readings from the Holy Book of his faith. These readings should offer hope and comfort, and should relate directly to the situation. Sample eulogies will include lots of tips about how to find the right readings for your speech. They will also include examples of readings you may wish to include.

Prayers

Unless the general religion of the funeral forbids a layman to lead the congregation in prayer, it is a great idea to open or end your eulogy with a prayer. If you choose to do this, it is wise to consult sample eulogies for ideas about what to include in your prayers. You might pray for strength and guidance as you deliver your speech and for strength for the mourners you are addressing as they struggle with their grief. If you do not share the faith of the deceased and his family members, it might be wise to leave out the prayer and allow the officiating minister to deliver the prayer instead. You will find that there are plenty of sample eulogies that include prayers, and there are also plenty that do not.

Make It Your Own

Whatever you choose to do and whatever sample eulogies you prefer to use, be sure to add enough personal information and anecdotes to make it personal. You have been asked to deliver the eulogy by the family and friends of the deceased, and they will want it to be personal, comforting, and heartfelt. It is a great idea to use sample eulogies and templates, songs, and poems, but it is also very important that you include personal thoughts, memories, and anecdotes as well.

Giving A Mother Eulogy

Celebrate Her Life With Friends And Family

A mother eulogy should be a celebration of the life of the deceased. This is sometimes easy to understand but difficult to achieve when you, as the speaker, are suffering the pain of loss. This can be particularly true when the person you are celebrating is your mother. Eulogy writing does not have to be a tricky process when you use it as a means of grieving and healing.

Not A Graded Assignment

One of the first things you need to remember when writing your mother eulogy is that eulogies are not essays to be turned in and graded. You will not be judged on your grammar and syntax; no one will critique your topic sentences or the length of your paragraphs. It is your job to talk about and celebrate your mother; eulogy traditions are loose in this area, and you can create the speech you feel is fitting to you and to her.

The Mother You Remember

You may choose to talk about your memories of your mother; eulogy examples are filled with memorable stories that might be funny, poignant, or simply meaningful. Make your eulogy anecdotal, and it will be a little easier to keep your emotions in check as you move through your speech. Discuss her habits, her quirks, her hobbies, and her passions. As you touch on various details, you will remind friends and family of all the reasons they loved her and will miss her.

The Many Sides Of Your Mother

Whether you remember your mother as a great woman, a free spirit, a loving and caring nurturer, or some combination of these, this is your chance to tell everyone who she was and what that meant to her. As you write your mother eulogy, consider the following aspects of her life:

  • Did she have a career?
  • Did she volunteer in the community?
  • Did she love to read, knit, rock climb, travel?
  • What were her passions?
  • What was her childhood like?
  • What was life like living with her?

Talking about her life in your mother eulogy will help your listeners come to terms with your mother’s death, and will help you do so as well.

Stages Of Her Life

People’s lives change and they go through seasons and stages, from childhood to adolescence, into young adulthood and then middle age and so on. Your mother played many roles throughout her life:

  • Daughter
  • Sister
  • Girlfriend
  • Wife
  • Mother
  • Grandmother
  • Friend

Your mother eulogy can touch on all of these in celebration of all the people she was. If finding the right words is not your strong suit, you can spend some time gathering thoughts and stories from people who knew her in each of these roles and string them together into a single “We’ll all miss you, Mother” eulogy that will not soon be forgotten.

Lay Her To Rest

Finally, your mother eulogy should close with the end of the chapter. Whether you are standing in a churchyard, a funeral home, or your own family room, be sure to mark this occasion as something special and even sacred. Your mother eulogy should close with a good bye and promise never to forget her, the lessons she has taught, and the love she has given.

Learning How To Write A Eulogy Is Not Difficult

Write A Funeral Speech That Memorializes The Deceased And Offers Solace

Learning how to write a eulogy is not difficult. If you have been confronted with the task of writing a funeral speech, it is probably an assignment that was given to you with little warning. There is no reason to panic, however, as there are many resources at your fingertips. Books and websites have been dedicated to teaching others how to write a funeral speech; experts understand that this is not a skill that is used frequently, and that the necessity is usually accompanied by a time of emotional upheaval. If you follow a few key steps, you will be able to write a successful memorial speech and deliver it as well.

Understand What A Eulogy Is

Before you can learn how to write a funeral speech, you must understand what a eulogy is and what you are trying to accomplish with your words. A eulogy is a speech told at a funeral service. Through memories, thoughts, and shared emotion, the person delivering a eulogy helps the mourners remember the deceased and share in a few moments of grief and solace. A eulogy should be heartfelt and personal, but must be delivered without the speaker being overwhelmed with his own emotions.

Getting Started

If you are not sure how to write a eulogy, there are a few steps you can take to get your funeral speech off the ground.

  • Look at templates and examples at websites dedicated to teaching how to write a funeral speech.
  • Jot down some fond memories you have of time spent with the deceased.
  • Talk with family members and friends to learn more about your loved one that you might want to include in your speech.

What To Include

There are a few different points you may choose to hit in your funeral speech. When learning how to write funeral speech, you may settle on one or more of these points. Depending on your relationship to the deceased, your perception of his character, and whether you are the only speaker, you may choose to use all of these components or just a few.

  • Biography of the deceased.
  • Memories and anecdotes.
  • Your own thoughts about his death and what it means to you.
  • Words of comfort and hope to your listeners.

When considering how to write a funeral speech, you must consider what you know about the person you are eulogizing, what stands you out to you as important, and what writing and speaking styles you are most comfortable with.

Supporting Materials

As you learn how to write a eulogy, you will want to consider what content you wish to include in your speech. You might also want to pull other resources. There are many different supportive tidbits that you will find when seeking advice about how to write a eulogy, and sometimes using someone else’s words makes it easier to string together your own. Some ideas include the following.

  • Poems
  • Quotes
  • Song lyrics
  • Scripture readings
  • Prayers

Remember that the resources you choose should be applicable to the deceased, to your relationship with him, and to the general nature of the funeral. In other words, Christian scripture readings would be inappropriate at a Jewish funeral, and so on. Learning how to write a eulogy is not difficult as long as you remember to include a piece of yourself in your speech.

Characteristics Of Effective Funeral Speeches

Helping Mourners Remember With A Well Written Eulogy

Funeral speeches are an important part of the overall funeral service. When written and delivered effectively, funeral speeches fulfill many of the purposes of holding a memorial service:

  • Remembering the deceased.
  • Grieving with others who loved the deceased.
  • Providing solace and hope to those who have come to mourn.

While funeral speeches will be different from one situation to the next, there are a few important factors that all effective eulogies have in common.

Funeral Speeches Are Concise

While 15 minutes may not seem very long, it is too long for a eulogy. Funeral speeches should last only about 10 minutes, longer only under certain circumstances. This is enough time to give some details about the life of the deceased, share an anecdote or two, and offer some words of comfort. A funeral is a difficult time for the friends and family of one who as passed, and long, boring funeral speeches will make the circumstances worse for everyone.

Funeral Speeches Focus On The Positive

While you and the rest of the mourners are in attendance because of a sad event, your eulogy should focus on positive aspects of the life of the deceased. Of course, you can talk about the fact that you are saddened by the loss, but the basis speech should be centered around fond memories that make you and your listeners smile or even laugh. This is a time to comfort one another with thoughts of the deceased and what he or she has brought to your lives.

Funeral Speeches Are Heartfelt

While biographical information has an important place in funeral speeches, your eulogy should not just be a recitation of facts. The friends and family of the deceased will be waiting to hear about the character of your loved one and how he affected your life. These comments should come from the heart and ring of sincerity and true emotion. Of course, you must be careful to remain strong and positive during your speech, but your listeners will surely forgive a few tears if they are shed in remembrance of the deceased.

Funeral Speeches Are Conversational

Funeral speeches are not dissertations. Notes are important to keep your thoughts on track, especially in light of the emotions of the day. However, you should keep your tone casual and conversational. Your listeners should feel as though you are talking to them, even with them, but never at them. If you are sharing a story or a piece of information you learned from someone at the funeral, feel free to reference that person. Above all, do not worry about making a mistake. Public speaking can be scary, but no one here is expecting you to be a professional; they just need someone to say out loud those words that everyone needs to hear.

Funeral Speeches Offer Solace

The ultimate goal of funeral speeches is to offer comfort and hope to those attending the funeral. To this end, you may want to wrap up your eulogy with words of hope. If you are struggling with finding these words yourself, you can pull from other resources:

  • Poems
  • Bible verses
  • Song lyrics
  • Prayers

Keep them simple and concise, and close with interpretive words of your own. Funeral speeches that contain these components will meet the goals and expectations of the task.

Step By Step Guide To Writing A Funeral Speech

Dealing With Death Through The Written And Spoken Word

Writing and delivering a funeral speech is not as difficult as it sounds. The key is to know the goal of your eulogy and to organize your thoughts ahead of time. You will find that there are ample resources online that provide samples and templates to help you get started. The creators of these samples and guidelines understand that you are not only preparing a funeral speech; you are also grieving the death of a loved one, which will cloud your ability to assemble a coherent eulogy.

What Is A Funeral Speech?

A funeral speech, or eulogy, is a speech delivered at a funeral or memorial service. It serves several purposes:

  • To praise and remember the deceased.
  • To share your thoughts and feelings about the deceased.
  • To offer support and hope to those who attend the funeral.

If you keep these things in mind when writing the funeral speech, you will be better able to make sure that all of the necessary components are there.

Step 1: Gather Information

A funeral speech usually includes some biographical material. If you are unsure of some information, you may want to talk with a sibling of the deceased or someone else who knows details about his life.

Step 2: Organize Information

This may include some or all of the following information:

  • Where and when was he born?
  • What was he like as a child?
  • Did he have siblings?
  • What was his school life like?

Then you will talk about his adult life:

  • Talk about his career.
  • Talk about his family; was he married? Did he have kids?
  • Discuss his hobbies and passions.

This biographical section might be the first part of your funeral speech. You can include brief anecdotes and memories or stories shared by loved ones during your information gathering chats.

Step 3: Recall Your Own Memories

This may be a painful process at first, but the exercise should actually help you remember things that make you smile. You may not use all of the memories you think of, but if you jot down some notes about a few times you and the deceased spent together, one or two will stand out as great memories to share. You can also talk about why these memories are meaningful to you at this point. This will provide empathy to those listeners who are remembering the same or similar experiences. In this way, your funeral speech will bring together the funeral goers as they think on those memories that make them smile.

Step 4: Offer Comfort

Finally, your funeral speech should include a section that provides comfort to those who are mourning with you. You can pull from experiences with the deceased, from religious scripture if appropriate, or from an inspirational quote or poem. These resources are offered in abundance at sites dedicated to helping others write effective eulogies. The conclusion to your funeral speech should offer comfort and hope, ending on a positive note about the deceased and those who have survived him.

The Healing Power Of Writing A Funeral Eulogy

Using Writing And Speech To Deal With The Death Of A Loved One

A funeral eulogy can be both difficult and therapeutic to write. When you have suffered the loss of someone close to you, writing and delivering the funeral eulogy can actually be the single most important part of the healing process. This is because the task forces you to use writing and speech to think about what you loved about that person and about the emotions brought about by his death. This is a necessary step in moving on after the loss.

The Therapy Of Writing

Writing about your friend of loved one gives you quiet time to think about him, about his death, and about his life. As you write the funeral eulogy to be given at his memorial ceremony, you have the chance to ponder what he meant to you, to remember fun times you shared together, and to mourn. When you walk into the church or the funeral home to memorialize him, you will have already taken on the worst of these emotions and, to some extent, come to terms with them.

The Therapy Of Reading

As you research possible poems, quotes, and scripture readings that will be appropriate for your funeral eulogy, you will be finding the right words to offer comfort and hope to those who will be listening to you; you will also be find the right words to offer comfort and hope to yourself. By finding those pieces that work with your funeral eulogy, you will be giving yourself the support you need to move forward.

The Therapy Of Speaking

Anyone who has lost someone they love, whether to cancer or to an unexpected accident, will tell you that they have been comforted by the ability to talk about the deceased, and about how they felt about him. It authenticates one’s memories and provides release. As you deliver your funeral eulogy, share anecdotes about your times with your loved one, and talk about your thoughts and feelings surrounding his loss, you will be offering some comfort to those around you, but you will also be giving yourself a much needed release. Much like an hour with a therapist, standing up for 10 or 15 minutes to share memories and grief with those around you will allow you to begin to heal.

Not An Impossible Task

The funeral takes place only days after a death. This does not give you much time to put your emotions aside and tackle this seemingly impossible task of writing a funeral eulogy. However, it is possible, and in fact, it is necessary. If you take the time to look at some funeral eulogy examples and templates, you can make the job a little more objective, and as you begin to fill in personal information and ideas, you will be surprised at how easily it is written.

When the time comes to speak at the service, you will have your written speech as a roadmap of sorts, so if your emotions become too much, you can use your written notes to keep you going. Your funeral eulogy will be a success if it is planned and written from the heart.

Free Sample Eulogies Lighten The Load

Borrowing Ideas From Other Speeches To Write A Better Tribute

Free sample eulogies can make the task of honoring a loved one a far less daunting task. If you have lost a friend or a family member and you have been asked to deliver a eulogy, you may be overwhelmed by the grieving process. This will make the idea of writing a eulogy seem impossible. For this reason, others have posted free sample eulogies online and in books to help you get through the funeral.

More Than Just Words

If writing a eulogy was just about getting up and saying a few words, it might be easy. However, it is more than that. The person you are eulogizing has just died, and you are dealing with that loss. Your listeners are grieving as well. Your words must honor the dead and help the living remember, celebrate, and mourn your loved one. This a lot to shoulder, especially if public speaking and speech writing are not your strong points. Free sample resumes can make that load a little lighter.

Borrow A Few Ideas

Free sample eulogies will give you a great starting point. You can look at eulogies and speeches that have been given for mothers, fathers, friends, and so on, finding the ones that are most relevant to your situation. You can look at eulogies that have been give for or by famous people, which may include words of comfort that you can quote or paraphrase within your own tribute.

A Starting Point

Remember that your eulogy should be a personal speech that shares your personal insights and talks about personal points about the person being honored. For this reason, simply using free sample eulogies, word for word, is not enough, but you will find that the words of these samples will help you focus your thoughts and build a little momentum in your own writing.

Templates

Another great tool you will find at sites that offer free sample eulogies are templates. These are samples that provide structure for your speech. You can choose the one that works best for your situation and simply fill in the blanks. Once you have written your eulogy according to the template, you can embellish throughout with stories and anecdotes that help to illustrate your thoughts.

Funeral Etiquette

There is much more to learn from free sample eulogies and templates than just writing ideas. You will also be able to get tips about funeral etiquette, what topics to bring up and what you should not mention. You can get a idea of about how long your speech should be and what the traditional goals and objectives of your eulogy should be. Of course, there are no set universal standards for eulogies, and what is expected and acceptable changes with different cultures and situations; however, these free sample eulogies can offer some solid advice as to how to get started.

Make It Your Own

Once you have reviewed a few free sample eulogies and you have perhaps chosen a template that works for you, it is time to personalize your speech. Your eulogy should be written from the heart, even if you are using form and structure borrowed elsewhere. It should be peppered with your personality and with the character and life of the deceased you are honoring. Free sample eulogies are merely spring boards for your own unique thoughts and ideas.

Free Eulogy Templates Give You a Jumping Off Point

Add Details And Personal Experiences To Make It Complete

Using free eulogy templates to pay tribute to a loved one might seem cold at first. However, if you use these tools simply as starting points, you will find that they are instrumental in helping you create a touching speech that is organized and easy to follow. Additionally, you can find free eulogy templates that work for just about any situation. Whether you are speaking at a funeral for a friend, a family member, a boss, or a coworker, you will find free eulogy templates that help you write and deliver a powerful eulogy.

 Basic Components

Most free eulogy templates will be written in a fill-in-the-blank format, and will contain several basic elements:

  • Introduction
  • Early life of the deceased
  • School and work
  • Marriage or relationships
  • Hobbies and passions
  • Personal memories
  • Conclusion

Of course, you will need to stray from the formula of free eulogy templates if there is an obviously outstanding trait about the deceased that strays from the basic blueprint. Perhaps his work in the Peace Corps, his service to the armed forces, or his commitment to the church is a pervading trait. In this case, your free eulogy templates will only take you so far. The key is to make your speech personal and characteristic of your subject.

Shop Around

There are other eulogy templates available besides the basic one listed above. If you are not happy with the one you have found, look at a few more. Each will have different elements, and you may find that you can use a few elements of a several different free eulogy templates to create something with all the components you want.

Don’t Be Afraid To Stray

Free eulogy samples are only examples and ideas. As you begin filling in the blanks for your speech, you will certainly think of stories and anecdotes you would like to share. Remember that you are not married to the templates; insert content of your own, change around the order of your components. You can do whatever you need to do to give a speech that successfully honors the subject of your eulogy.

Add Some Spice

There are lots of ways that you can personalize your funeral speech, if you so choose. You can add pieces that help you express your thoughts, your emotions, and your ideas. You can choose from a wide range of media:

  • Song lyrics
  • Poems
  • Religious scriptures
  • Quotes from celebrities and philosophers
  • Pictures from the life of the deceased
  • Recorded music, such as a favorite song or a song with expressive words

Remember that as you make your choices, you want the speech to be about the deceased, not about you. You may love rock and roll, but if the deceased is a country western fan, then this is the genre of music you should use. Free eulogy templates can give you an outline, but they cannot offer the kinds of personalized touches you can add.

Key Components To A Father Eulogy

Writing And Speaking The Words That Will Lead To Healing

If you are called on to speak at the funeral of your father, eulogy writing is not as daunting as it may seem. A quick search online will uncover articles, essays, and example father eulogies that are available to help you through the task. When your speech is written, you will find yourself in a better place for having written it. The act of writing a father eulogy is a healing process in and of itself. The key is to choosing just the right anecdotes, thoughts, and emotions to share that will help those in attendance as much as they help you.

Define Your Goals

Before you begin writing your father eulogy, it is wise to decide what you would like your words to accomplish. Often, there are several parts to a funeral speech, including a biographical portion, a sharing of thoughts and feelings that can be very personal, and an offering of hope and comfort to your listeners. You could define these as a section about the life of the deceased, one about your feelings about the deceased, and one about the support of the mourners. You may also choose to focus on only one or two aspects of your father’s life or his character. It is up to you how you want to frame your father eulogy.

Biography

As you talk about your father’s life in the introduction to your father eulogy, you might want to include some information about his childhood:

  • Where was he born?
  • What was his family life like?
  • What kind of a child was he?

For this information, you might need to talk with his parents if they are alive, or to his siblings. They will feel good about hearing their memories shared through your father eulogy.

Next, you can talk about his life as you observed it:

  • What was it like being his son or daughter?
  • Where did he work, and how did he feel about his job?
  • What did he love to do in his free time?

You can share an anecdote or two about your life with your father in this section. These stories should be relatively short and always positive. This is not the time to air old grievances you had with him. A father eulogy is a celebration of the life of the deceased.

Thoughts And Feelings

After you have shared facts about his life, you can spend a few minutes talking about more subjective issues:

  • What life lessons did you learn from him?
  • What will you miss most now that he is gone?
  • What will you do differently in his absence?

This is possibly the most difficult section of your father eulogy, so be prepared. If your written speech is well prepared, you can rely on your notes to keep you grounded as you share your respect, love, and admiration for your departed father.

Comfort For Your Listeners

A good conclusion to your father eulogy is to draw on the words of others; you can pull in a poem or a scripture reading that talks of healing, comfort, and hope. Use these words, mixed with your own, to provide your listeners with a sense of healing. This is the ultimate objective of a father eulogy.