Eulogy comes from a Greek word, meaning ‘good words’ and can be a speech or piece of writing in praise or as a tribute to the life of a person.
Someone you love or care deeply about has died and you may have been asked to say a few words at the service. It can be absolutely any type of words you like; humorous, sad, poetic, dramatic, anything.
A eulogy is a healing experience, for you and for family and friends of the deceased. It is an opportunity to remember and celebrate the life of the deceased and to face all the emotions that come with losing someone you hold dear. Here are a few tips to help you along:
- Write your eulogy in a form that will help you to deliver it whether that means, key words on paper, bullet points or a full speech written out.
- Use your own memories and ask family and friends for their stories.
- Sometimes the most poignant eulogies can be read like a letter to the deceased.
- It may help to think about the big achievements in the life of the deceased, the hurdles overcome, the milestones reached.
- Few of us are saintly, but the eulogy should concentrate on what was positive in a life or mention in humour the negative.
- Do not be afraid to use poetry or quotations, if they mean something to you, family or friends. It does not matter if it’s the words to ‘ooh ah just a little bit’ or a Shakespearean quote!
- Try to avoid clichés.
- You are not on your own. If you have to stop in the middle to compose yourself, do not panic.
- End with a farewell to the deceased using a piece of music or a video or a reading.