When a loved one passes away, we wish to pay tribute to their life in a meaningful way. Honoring their cherished memories and accomplishments is a crucial part of the grieving process. Writing a eulogy is a brilliant way to share these pivotal moments with people who departed.
But how to distill a lifetime of experiences and memories into a 10-15-minute eulogy? Eulogies are 'once-in-a-lifetime' events that can give many the jitters – apart from the feelings of grief and loss. There also exists the pressure to captivate the essence of a person's loss and help alleviate the grief of near ones.
Without a shade of doubt, eulogies can be challenging to craft. But with care, penning down a remarkable one can be a worthwhile experience. Today’s comprehensive post aims to walk you through all you need to know about writing a eulogy speech effectively. Going through this all-encompassing post will enable you to overcome all the obstacles and write a memorable eulogy that offers the perfect tributes.
What is a Eulogy? A Quick Overview
Before we dive deep to understand how to write a eulogy, it is significant to understand what a eulogy speech truly is.
A eulogy is a remembrance speech that close friends, family members, or colleagues usually give during a memorial service or funeral. The eulogy is meant to respect the person who has passed away, celebrating their life, summoning them into the audience's minds, and bidding farewell to them one last time.
It gives those in attendance a remarkable opportunity to recall the departed individual's accomplishments, character, and legacy. In this way, it pays tribute to them through shared and cherished memories. It also provides solace to mourners as they say farewell to their loved ones.
If you are asked to give a eulogy speech for a loved one or friend, it is considered an honor. This is a sign that you played a critical part in that person's life. If you are feeling nervous and overwhelmed by the responsibility of getting it 'right,’ know that each eulogy is meant to be unique. Though there are innumerable guidelines you can follow, the key is to remember that writing a eulogy is also about the things that come from the heart.
Must Read: Funny Persuasive Speech Topics
What is the Purpose of a Eulogy?
Now that you are well-versed with what is a eulogy speech, let’s understand the significance of writing a remarkable eulogy.
The purpose of a funeral speech or eulogy is to recall the defining qualities and highlights of a life lived in a way that benefits the audience hugely, especially the family. It should captivate the essence of the life lived.
It should reflect effectively what was special about the person, how they affected those around them, and how they will be remembered now that they are no more. The eulogy may incorporate anecdotes about the person who passed away, a list of achievements, their favorite quotes, or lessons acquired.
A close look at remarkable eulogy examples will also reveal that including a thoughtfully chosen personal anecdote in your eulogy can be a heartfelt reminder of the characteristics of your loved ones that attendees can reflect on fondly.
What Should Be Included in a Eulogy?
Writing a eulogy speech can feel like a huge responsibility. Ensuring your words pay a memorable tribute effectively to a special person is the ultimate goal.
Have a look at certain essential aspects to include while penning down your funeral speech –
- A brief overview of the life of the deceased person, with the inclusion of key milestones
- Your favorite memories with them, incorporating a specific anecdote or two
- Details about their relationship with close family and friends
- Any important achievements related to interests, career, or hobbies
- Appreciation for anyone who was especially supportive or significant to them
- A description of the way that person died, as not everyone attending the funeral may know this
- Songs, poems, or stories written by the departed
- Favorite words by poets or authors they loved
At the end of the speech, make sure, to sum up by saying who the person was at their core and say your goodbyes to them in a meaningful way.
Must Read: Quantitative Research Topics
How Long Should a Eulogy Be?
Akin to any speech, a eulogy should never be too long. It should not ever stretch more than 10 minutes. A good rule of thumb is that a eulogy should be sweet and brief. It is also vital not to be casual or hasty when delivering a funeral speech. Generally, it should last between three to five minutes.
The length of the speech mainly depends on how fast you speak. Usually, between 400 and 900 written words will make for a perfectly timed eulogy when delivered orally.
Why is a Eulogy Important?
Losing a loved one is perhaps one of the most challenging trials you will face in life. In such a circumstance, maybe the last thing you want is to stand before a large crowd and speak about your feelings.
But you should know that giving a eulogy speech is important and helpful for those who are grieving. A eulogy is not simply a speech that summarizes one's life. It's more than that!
Let’s have a look at the significance of eulogies to understand why they are a crucial part of a meaningful end-of-life ceremony –
- It Honors the Deceased’s Life
A remarkably crafted and thoughtful eulogy celebrates the life lived and describes why the deceased was loved. It is a perfect opportunity to share the legacy of the loved one. It is a time when questions like – “What did they value in life? Which virtues they demonstrated? What was their response when things became difficult?” can all be addressed and answered effectively.
- It Offers Healing to the Grieving
As per Dr. Alan Wolfelt, a well-acclaimed grief expert, there are six universal mourning requirements. One of those requirements is remembering the loved one who passed away. This is where a eulogy can help guide those suffering from pain toward healthy grieving.
The eulogy offers those who are still here an opportunity to think of the ways they desire to remember the person who has passed away. It also helps recall warm memories, happy moments, and special stories that offer much-needed comfort. Further, when you give a eulogy, your kind words can help ease the pain of loss for others.
- It Can Start a Healthy Grief Journey
A crucial long-term benefit a eulogy can offer is getting you started on the right foot of your grief journey. They can't promise closure, but both can enable you to move closer to your pain. This will also enable you to become close to healing.
Now that you are well-versed in how eulogy speeches are crucial and helpful, you will be able to deliver a memorable eulogy that can effectively honor your loved one and help those who grieve.
What Do You Need to Do Before Writing a Eulogy?
A close look at eulogy templates will help you understand that eulogy can take numerous forms. Certain individuals who deliver a eulogy decide to open with a poem, a religious reading, or a personal anecdote. On the other hand, certain choose to use these crucial elements as a closing thought.
Irrespective of which strategy you choose, here are certain crucial things you need to consider before starting to pen down a eulogy to make sure it hits the right notes –
- The Theme of the Funeral
Use this to guide the tone of your eulogy. Like, you can sort things like the funeral hymns that will be incorporated into the memorial service.
- How the Anecdotes Will Be Received
Make sure not to share anything that will shame the friends or family members of your loved ones.
- The Sound of it When Read Aloud
Regardless of whether you are writing a eulogy for a mother or father, try reading the eulogy aloud when writing to find out the sound of it. Read it to another family member for feedback. Often, it will be simply a case of practicing it. However, at other times, you will find that other words or phrases requires being removed or changed.
- Collect Memories
Before you start writing, take considerable time to speak with relatives, friends, and loved ones of the person who has passed away. They will thank you for incorporating them in the process, and including their perspectives will also make your eulogy even more amazing.
It is equally crucial to think about your own experiences. Look at your old photo albums. It can help you trigger memories with the deceased. Then, you can determine what aspects of a person's character you aim to communicate to the people who have arrived to mourn them.
- Final Words
Determining your final words in the speech can be the most challenging part. Remember, your goal is to always bring comfort to the guests, sum up your loved ones and say goodbye to them properly.
Do not worry about getting emotional while reading your eulogy. Everyone will understand, even if you shed a couple of tears. If you are still striving to carry on, take a moment to breathe deeply and get ready to speak again.
Must Read: 70 Best Information Essay Topics
How to Write a Eulogy: A Step-By-Step Guide
A close look at stellar examples of the eulogy will help you understand that there is no right or wrong way to craft a funeral speech. If you are chosen to deliver one, this implies you have a meaningful connection to the departed and your spectacular storytelling abilities.
The key to giving a memorable eulogy is to have confidence in yourself throughout the process. And, if you start feeling nervous, depend on the memories you have with your loved ones to guide you through the process.
Have a look at the essential steps enlisted below to write a meaningful eulogy for a loved one efficiently –
- Determine the Tone
Before you start writing a eulogy, ensure to consider how serious or lighthearted you want your eulogy to be. An excellent eulogy doesn't require being uniformly somber; simply appropriate. You can also take a serious approach or boldly include some humor. When used cautiously, humor can also help in expressing the deceased's personality and demonstrating some of his/her endearing qualities.
- Consider the Audience
A close look at funeral speech examples will reveal that it is essential to craft the eulogy with the family and loved ones of the deceased in mind. Always focus on the positive, but ensure to be honest. If the deceased was difficult or inordinately negative, refrain from speaking about it or alluding to it gently.
Also, do not say anything that will shock, offend, or baffle the audience. Like, ensure not to make any jokes or comments about the deceased that will be a mystery to a majority of the crowd.
- Introduce Yourself
Even if a majority of people in the audience know you, it is still significant to introduce yourself. If you are related to the deceased, then explain how. If you are not, explain a few words about how and when you met. However, make sure to keep it brief – it's not about you.
- Provide the Basic Information About the Deceased
Although your eulogy doesn't have to read like an obituary or provide all of the basic information about the deceased's life, it should touch on a couple of key points. This can be something like his family life, major career accomplishments, and interests and hobbies that mattered the most to him.
Additionally, you can find a way of specifying this information while remembering or praising the deceased.
- Include Specific Examples to Give the Deceased’s Details
Always refrain from narrating a long list of qualities that the person had. Rather, specify quality and then demonstrate it with the story. This is as the stories will bring the person and his specific character traits to life.
Try speaking with as many people as possible to get their memories, impressions, and thoughts about the deceased. Then, jot down as many memories of your own.
- Organize and Structure the Speech
When writing a eulogy, give it a beginning, middle, and end. Refrain from rambling or speaking down to people. You can have a rich vocabulary, but dumb it down for the masses just this once. As you know, the average eulogy is about 3-5 minutes long. This should be enough for you to offer a meaningful speech about the deceased.
This should be suitable for the life-story approach. It must begin with childhood and proceed through the highlights of their life.
- Reverse Chronological
Here, start with the present or the recent past. Then, start working backward.
- Three-Point Plan
Here, determine the three key things to say and plan the best order for saying them.
Select one big theme and provide enough examples, anecdotes, and stories to describe and demonstrate it.
- Craft the Eulogy Outline
There exists no set outline or traditional template for the eulogy. However, with all public speaking and writing, it is essential to include an attention-captivating opening, a solid middle segment in three parts, and some concluding remarks.
Whether you are writing a eulogy for a mother or father, you can follow the outline given below –
- An excellent introduction can incorporate a funny or engaging story. It can also include a meaningful quote or something that illustrates the deceased's personality.
- Use the introduction to develop a motif you can return to throughout the eulogy.
- Specify your relationship to the deceased and thank attendees on behalf of the family.
- Aim for one to two minutes.
Segment One: Life Details
- This section should be brief, at the most, one minute.
- Incorporate the highlights, some but not all. You can include details on birthplace, the lineage of the family, education, work, marriage, children, religion, hobbies, community involvement, awards, places lived and traveled.
- Do not incorporate everything. This will make your speech dry and mundane.
Segment Two: Memories
- Speaking about a memory or two helps one or more characteristics of the deceased to shine. It should be something that will resonate with anyone who knows them.
- Allow a good two minutes or so to remarkable share some memories.
- Try to narrate at least 2 to 3 stories.
Segment Three: Legacy
- Establish a connection between the theme you have developed in the stories to the memories and introduction.
- This is what you will want to emphasize as their legacy.
- Rather than simply saying, “He was caring, loving and generous,” show how he was caring. Loving and generous.
- This portion doesn’t require being too long. One minute is perfectly fine.
- Akin to the introduction, it is wise to close with a quote, story, or illustration.
- Your closing remarks can be anywhere between ten seconds to a minute. Simply say a couple of brief sentences to wrap the speech up.
- Make sure to bid ‘goodbye’ to your loved one
- End the eulogy by simply saying ‘Thank you.’
Mix in Gratitude
Towards the end of a eulogy, do not forget to say your thank-yous. Demonstrating gratitude for everyone who attended the funeral is always a beautiful gesture.
Also, thank everyone who has offered unmatched support for the past few days. Pay your respect to the church, funeral home, hospice center, and the like. Include anyone who has been taking care of your loved ones and your family.
- End the Eulogy and Say Goodbye
The closing of the eulogy can incorporate song lyrics, a reading of the poem or verse, or an expression of gratitude for your loved ones. It can also outline the primary sentiment you want your attendees to remember about your departure.
- Get Feedback
Once you have finished working on your eulogy and feel confident in your writing, try to get your family members or close ones who know the deceased to read it. They will be able to ensure that it is accurate and remarkably captivates the essence of the deceased.
Further, they will also be able to notice if you have said anything inappropriate, forgotten something vital or penned down anything tough or baffling to comprehend.
Unique Tips for Writing a Beautiful Eulogy
Delivering a meaningful and moving eulogy can be nerve-wracking for even the most proficient public speaker, but it does not always need to be that way.
Writing and delivering a eulogy is a therapeutic tool that helps deal with grief. Here are certain remarkable strategies for drafting and delivering an eloquent and memorable eulogy effectively –
- Tell Happy Stories
A close look at examples of eulogies will help you understand that a eulogy is more than simply a list of outstanding qualities of the deceased and the reasons you loved them. It's an opportunity to remember and share their life stories with friends and family members. If you cannot remember the details of a story or aren’t sure you have got it right, you can always request your close friends and family members to assist you.
- Make it Short and Sweet
When it comes to funeral speeches, make sure to always keep your speech short and sweet. It is always wise to carefully choose fewer words with more power. Remember that the mass will only remember one or two lines from the eulogy, if at all. Hence, it is necessary to use your words precisely and wisely.
- Start the Speech with Humor
Remember, at a funeral, everyone is either devastated, miserable, or nervous. Kicking off a eulogy with humor will get the mass relaxed right off the bat. Then, everything else you aim to say will land more deeply with a relaxed crowd.
- Use a Conversational Tone
Always make sure to read your eulogy to the readers as if you are speaking with your friends. Pause and make eye contact. Go slowly if you want. Establish a connection with your audience and share the moment with them. Furthermore, it is unnecessary to be formal when surrounded by loved ones who share your grief.
- Do Not Be Afraid to Show Emotion
Funerals are an incredibly emotional event. No one in your audience expects you not to shed a few tears. But, if you feel that you will be strongly overcome by your emotions, have a backup plan where someone you have faith in can deliver the speech for you. Provide them with a copy in advance if you feel this could be an issue.
- Be Honest
Eulogies shouldn't emphasize too much on negative qualities. However, you can say stories about an odd 'imperfection' or a little thing of the deceased that drove you mad. This can be heart-warming and will likely make others smile and remember you.
- Practice and Practice
Go through your eulogy countless times to become well-versed in it. Practice reading it in front of the mirror. Read over it to certain friends or family and get feedback from them.
Know the speech so well that you can recite it without making it look like you are reading a script. The more you practice, the more comfortable you will be.
Finally, know you don't need to be a seasoned writer to craft a strong eulogy. Simply follow your heart and your mind. The key is establishing a solid structure, sharing fond memories of your loved ones, and striking a tone that celebrates their life.
It will be a combination of your energy, love, and dedication. All people in the room can even sense that. And, even if it doesn't go according to the plan, no one will judge you. In the end, a eulogy is a gift to the deceased, your loved ones in the mass, and you.
Must Read: Personal Statement for Graduate School
Most Frequently Asked Question By Students
- Can a eulogy include humor or lighthearted moments?
Yes. A eulogy can be funny. Regardless of how sad you feel at the passing on of dear loved ones, you are celebrating their life. Hence, it doesn’t have to be always a miserable affair. However, ensure to follow the below-enlisted steps to write a funny eulogy –
- Emphasize the comedic qualities of the deceased
- Be specific and personal
- Incorporate a funny poem
- Conclude the speech with sincerity
- How can I prepare for delivering a eulogy?
- Craft a eulogy in detail and practice delivering it
- Limit a eulogy to two or three key points
- Concentrate on the life of a person for whom the eulogy is given
- Make a eulogy inspirational
- Use suitable mannerisms and gestures
- Should a eulogy focus only on the positive aspects of the deceased person’s life?
It is ideal to always focus on the positive aspects of the life of a deceased person. Hence, reconsider mentioning any kind of negative, religious, or political opinions. Make sure not to dwell on grievances or discuss topics that could spark any debate. Always make it a point to concentrate on the positives and remember the deceased fondly.
- Can I use notes or written text while delivering a eulogy?
Yes, you can use notes or written text while delivering the eulogy. This is especially vital if you are not used to public speaking. Notes will help you stay on track and ensure you cover all the important points you aim to make.
It is also vital not to read a eulogy word-by-word. This will make it sound rehearsed and impersonal. Rather, use your notes as a guide and always speak from the heart.
- How can I handle my emotions when delivering a eulogy?
- Practice giving the eulogy repeatedly
- Write out your eulogy, word for word
- Memorize the entire speech by heart
- Have a support person
- Eat before you speak
- Remember to take a deep breath or two during the eulogy
- Remember who the eulogy is for
- Keep things funny, if appropriate and possible
If you are still facing difficulties in writing a eulogy, you can seek assistance from the eminent stalwarts of Assignmenthelp.us. With 1500+ deft and knowledgeable experts, we offer unmatched assistance for all kinds of speeches.
Hire us to write the perfect and unforgettable eulogies for you. Contact us at +1-515-393-6211 to know more about our services.
You Might Also Like
LEAVE A REPLY
Thank you for Subscribe to us.
You will receive a confirmation email shortly in your subscribe email address.
You have already subscribed our newsletter.