You may have been asked to write a eulogy for a funeral, or you may have volunteered to say a few words yourself. If you’ve never done it before, you may be wondering where to start. A eulogy is a speech of remembrance about the individual who has passed away. It allows funeral-goers to remember the deceased for their life achievements, their general character, and the impact they had on those around them. A eulogy is typically given by a close family member or friend of the individual who has died. Writing a eulogy which will be well-received by the funeral attendees is a challenge. We’ve put together a short guide about how to write a meaningful and moving eulogy for a funeral service which may help you.
How long should a eulogy be?
A eulogy is typically between 5 to 10 minutes in duration. If you’re writing your eulogy out in full, aim for the text to be somewhere between 800 and 1500 words. Ensure that you give yourself enough time to write and edit your eulogy. Rushing it may mean that you miss out on significant points, or the text may not flow very well. Plan to spend at least a few hours writing and then editing the text. If you are nervous at the thought of public speaking, make sure to leave enough time to rehearse your speech. Perhaps you could ask a family member or friend to listen to your eulogy and suggest amendments or additions.
What should I include?
The truth is that there is an awful lot that you can include in your eulogy. Many eulogies start by recounting important life events such as where they were born, their education and how they met their spouse, and other parts of their life story. We also recommend that you give insights into their relationships with close family members and friends. Eulogies often discuss the intellectual accomplishments of the deceased. If they thrived in higher education, discuss their educational achievements. If they were career-focused, recount their accomplishments in their job roles. Also, draw attention to their personal goals and hobbies. One of the best ways to write a moving eulogy is to talk about your favourite first-hand memories with the deceased. If appropriate, tell the guests about funny moments with them that have stayed with you.
How should I give my eulogy?
If you are nervous, you may be tempted to speak quickly. Try to avoid this – talk slowly. Everyone wants to hear what you have to say. Remember that it is ok to pause for thought during the eulogy. After all, its purpose is for remembrance. You may also want to pause to give the funeral attendees a moment to contemplate something you have said. If you mention a family member or friend that is present at the funeral, give them eye contact if you speak about them. It will make them feel included. If possible, try to avoid too much fidgeting. If you’re nervous, some fidgeting is normal, but excessive fidgeting may distract the attendees from what you are saying.
We hope that our advice helps you write a meaningful eulogy that the funeral guests will find moving. If you need assistance planning a funeral for your loved one, contact us today and a member of our experienced team will be available to help you.