Writing a fitting tribute
"The eulogy may move us to tears, but it also has the power to heal. It can help us get things in perspective. We start to understand that we can cope best with bereavement not by pushing away what has been taken from us, but by bringing the memories closer and finding ways of moving on with those memories still within us.”            

Andrew Morton – Poet Laureate UK


The eulogy is the central part of the service. It consists of a brief biography of the deceased and some description of their character and attributes.The eulogy can be prepared and read by the Celebrant. If a member of the family wishes, they can write and/or deliver the main eulogy or shorter tributes. Family members are also encouraged to participate in readings if they feel that it is appropriate. Here are some headings to begin writing the eulogy. Of course, don't be limited by these; they are just a starting point (see below for ideas on the process of writing and delivery).
  • EulogyDeceased's name,  nickname
  • Date of birth
  • Birthplace and names of parents and siblings
  • Early life and schooling
  • Qualifications and work history
  • Marriage and children and grandchildren
  • Family life
  • Personality, characteristic sayings or humour
  • Community service and achievements
  • Hobbies and pets
  • Music, entertainment, and sporting interests
  • Last days before death


Some Ideas About Writing and Presenting the Eulogy The eulogy is the focal point of a funeral service. It illustrates a picture of the deceased and makes the service personal by sharing the memories with all who attend. It should help remember and affirm your loved one while giving value and honour to his or her character, by sharing about how he or she lived life and touched others.

A eulogy can be presented in a few different ways:

1. You can elicit personal remembrances from specific guests. Usually the guest would share a brief word and you can choose 5-6 family or friends to each share a personal experience or remembrance of your loved one. This allows several people to provide a eulogy but split up in portions as opposed to having one person provide the whole eulogy.

2. You or another appropriate person at your request, can offer a personal remembrance of your loved one. Often this is done by a son or daughter on behalf of a whole family. Having one person provide the eulogy draws from their own information and memories and usually last 5-10 minutes in length. You can also gather information from family and friends and weave that information into a moving and wonderful sharing time about your loved one.

You may be in the midst of funeral preparations and arrangements and do not have the time or effort to gather information and write a short speech. A method that can be helpful and promote the beginning processes of healing is to gather immediate family and close friends.

Arrange a comfortable setting where everyone can sit together in an informal fashion. At the gathering, express your need for information about your loved one's life so you can present a eulogy. Facilitate the group sharing and encourage everyone to participate. Take notes or have a friend help you, you can also record the sharing. Ask questions that encourage the people talking to develop their memories.

Once you've received the information, you can begin writing a eulogy. Look for patterns, key phrases, and things that capture the essence of your loved one's character. Remember that it is not possible to write everything about a person's life so choose specific items that will highlight how they lived and touch the lives of others.

Funeral readings

 "Sometimes on our journey through life, we meet people who leave footprints on our heart."


Elaine Searle Civil Celebrangt

Contact me to discuss a beautiful tribute to your loved one.

mob. 0402810062





Copyright Elaine Searle 2009 -2018