A Eulogy is a tribute speech meant to honor the deceased’s life by talking about how they lived their life and the positive impact they had on you as the eulogist and on others. It is important in a funeral and a memorial service to recount the character, valuable aspects, and impacts of the departed loved one, to properly familiarize the mourners about the deceased.
An eulogy template is essential when you want to write the remembrance speech, but you seem to struggle to find the right words or format because it is expected that you may be overwhelmed by sadness or heartache. The template presents a beautifully generated eulogy form containing the speech content. All you need to do is fill in the personalization details in the gaps and download the eulogy.
Free Eulogy Templates
Following are some free downloadable templates for you:
Eulogy templates by type
Standard eulogy templates
Importance of a Eulogy
When a beloved family member, friend, or colleague dies, all we are left of them are memories through which we eulogize them in a wake or funeral.
Note: Anyone from the friend group, family, or workmates of the deceased can write a eulogy.
The purpose of a eulogy is to commemorate the life of the person who died to help the mourning family and friends reminisce their departed brethren as they pay their last respects. As a eulogist entrusted with writing the remembrance speech for the deceased loved one, you should focus on their good qualities, like mention his/ her involvements in acts of service and the value they impacted the world. It is essential to have a session during the memorial service and funeral to eulogize the dead, as it helps others grieve, and presents a meaningful tribute.
The following points highlight the importance of a eulogy:
Eulogy helps other grieve
Grieving a dead family member or friend is considered by psychologists as the much-needed step for healing emotional pain and overcoming sadness. Presenting a tribute speech about the deceased helps others grieve by reminding them of their connection with the departed, which significantly provides the mourners with solace.
A meaningful tribute
A eulogy importantly helps keep the memory of the dead loved one alive, which strengthens and comforts the mourning family and friends. Mourners are comforted when they are reminded that the soul of the deceased lives on even after their physical death.
Essential Elements of a Eulogy Template
A eulogy template incorporates certain essential elements such as the introduction, birth details of the deceased, names of the family members of the deceased, educational background, and other personal details.
All these elements of a eulogy template should cover the information discussed below:
The first section of a eulogy should mainly introduce the deceased to the mourners who came to pay their last respects. The content in the first section of the eulogy should focus on the personal details of the dead loved one, as indicated below.
When and where they were born
When writing a eulogy, remember to include when and where the deceased was born to form part of a brief history narrated to the congregation.
The names of their close family
Mention in the eulogy template the names of those related to the departed start by naming their parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, and grandparents.
Personalizing the eulogy template helps mourners reminisce the deceased better by calling the deceased with nicknames familiar by all people. For example, the birth certificate name for the deceased may be Thompson Andrew, but friends and family popularly knew him as Andy. Hence using the nickname on the eulogy template; such as Andy sounds more relatable to everyone.
A eulogy or eulogy template should recount the education history and achievements of the dearly departed as part of remembering the deceased’s life.
Contribution(s) to the community
Information about the contributions done by departed to the community should be detailed in the eulogy template. The reason to include community contributions of the deceased in it is to help mourners remember the value the dead loved one brought to them.
How they met their spouse or partner
You should narrate in a eulogy how and when the deceased met their spouse if they were married and mention the full names of their spouse. This information aims to paint a picture of the connections and relationships the deceased had to give the mourners a glimpse of the past life of the departed.
Discuss how you know the deceased
In detailing introductory information about the deceased in a eulogy, you should discuss how you know the deceased, including your interactions. You can recount specific details of your interactions where the deceased impacted your life to show the mourners your grieving side and help them remember the dead or discover new aspects of the dead person.
Middle-section: Body of the eulogy
After the introductory part of the eulogy template, the next section is the middle part, considered the longest and the most important. The speech in the middle section may follow a specific theme or talking points to narrate the life or existence of the late.
The eulogist can focus on the following talking points:
- The accomplishments of the deceased
- Childhood years of the late
- The deceased’s impact on the community
- Marriage and children of the dead loved one
- Talk about significant life events of the late like their wedding or graduation etc.
- You can also discuss fond memories you have of the deceased
End-section: Wrap up
The shortest part of a eulogy template is the end section that summarizes the life of the deceased.
You can wrap up the eulogy by using some of the enlisted options below for the end section:
- You can end a eulogy by encouraging the family and friends to be strong
- Another effective way of closing a eulogy is to quote a scripture that resonates with the event
- Close the eulogy by telling friends and family how you wish for them always to remember the late
- State how the deceased would wish to be remembered in the end section of the eulogy
- End a eulogy by thanking attendees for coming to pay their last respects to the departed loved ones
How to Write a Eulogy
A eulogy is a sentimental piece of writing that considers significant issues that must be considered before writing an effective eulogy.
Following are the steps for writing an effective eulogy:
Think about your audience
When writing a eulogy, you must reflect on your audience, the audience will likely be friends and family, but other people could join the service.
When reflecting on your audience, you should consider points such as:
- Who are your audience?
- How would they feel listening to the eulogy of their departed loved one?
- What message do they want to hear through the eulogy?
- Lastly, decide the length of your eulogy to avoid stretching the concentration of your audience
There are certain words or stories you may need to leave out when writing the eulogy to avoid hurting the audience’s feelings or annoying them. Note that the eulogy is meant to uplift the audience’s spirits as much as it is meant to honor the memory of the dead.
Think about the person by recalling memories
Write a eulogy from the memories you have of the deceased to help the audience resonate with your words. You can recall the good times, funny moments, and enduring qualities of the dead, which help the audience recreate a picture of the deceased through your words. In addition, you may consult family and friends to obtain photographs and more factual details of the deceased’s qualities to guide you in writing the eulogy.
Collect stories and ideas
You can write a eulogy in cooperation with the family and friends of the deceased to gather more information about the late and who he was to different people. An effective eulogy should contain information everyone relates to, which can be achieved by collecting stories and ideas from other people about the deceased and how best to write the eulogy.
Choose a theme
When collecting stories and ideas for writing a eulogy, you could end up with too much content that cannot be included. Therefore it is advisable to pick a theme to focus your stories on to keep the eulogy straightforward and brief. Examples of eulogy themes include ‘love of family and friends, selflessness, services to the community, living one’s faith’.
State the basic information about the deceased
When writing a eulogy, start with the basic information about the deceased that everyone is likely to know to maintain the concentration of the audience. However, focusing too much on information that only you may know about the deceased may make people drift from the point and lose touch with your eulogy content.
Make an outline
To ensure your eulogy covers all essential components and details, you should create a speech outline as depicted below:
- Start by thanking the congregation for attending the funeral or memorial of the late
- Sate your relationship with the deceased
- Highlight critical topics that you will discuss the departed in the eulogy
- Early life:
- When and where the late was born
- Point out interesting facts about the childhood of the departed
- Talk about the education, marriage, and children of the dead family member or friend
- Discuss their career
- List the names of the family members:
- Concrete events, hobbies, and achievements of the deceased:
- Mention major positive or negative events that impacted the lives of the deceased
- Focus on the hobbies and interests of the late
- Mention what meant a lot to the late
- Highlight main achievements, wards, and recognitions obtained by the deceased
- Note down all significant memories you have of the dead friend or family member you are eulogizing
- End with scripture or song that encourages the mourning friends and family of the deceased
- Thank the attendees for their time
Write the first draft
Begin writing your first draft of the eulogy, which is subject to many edits to get the best final copy. Write all your content from the introductory to the end in the first draft to save time when making edits. It may be easier to start writing the eulogy with stories that make up the body paragraphs of the speech and consider writing the introduction and conclusion last. Beautiful quotes tend to be a reasonable conclusion for a eulogy that leaves your congregation with beautiful imaginations about the deceased.
Edit and rehearse
After the first draft of the completed eulogy is complete, present it to a few family and friends for suggestions on areas that may need editing. After editing, like any other speech, you should rehearse in front of someone to prepare and gain feedback for improvement.
Recommendations to Deliver a Eulogy
Delivering a eulogy is part of public speaking that needs rehearsals and practice to perfect.
Here are some noteworthy points when delivering a eulogy:
Memorize as much as you can
To have a good chance at delivering a eulogy, you should memorize the content as much as possible to make it easier to mention the names you may be struggling to pronounce. If you seem to stutter or struggle reading the content of the eulogy, people will think that it was written by someone else or indicate your unpreparedness, which is a negative trait.
Don’t worry if overcome with emotion
When you are delivering a eulogy speech, you break down or get overcome by emotions. It would help if you did not panic but give yourself little time to recollect and get back to the speech.
Have a standby
When preparing to deliver a eulogy speech, make sure you get someone close to you to rehearse the eulogy to help you deliver the speech in case emotions overcome you on that day.
Wear suitable clothes
When delivering a eulogy, you must pay keen attention to your dressing by ensuring that your outfit concurs with the theme to avoid distracting your audience. Funerals are commonly known to follow a black outfit theme or clothing with dull or dark colors to show grief.
To ensure that everyone in the crowd heard what you are saying, speak slowly when delivering a eulogy speech. Note that a eulogy is a remembrance speech. Hence it would help if you gave the audience time as you present to think and recall memories about the deceased.
Use a conversational tone
A soft conversational tone is more appropriate when delivering a eulogy to make the audience feel that they are talking to a friend who shares in their grief.
Pause for thought
When delivering a eulogy speech, you should pause for thought to allow the audience a moment of silence to recount a special memory you have shared about the deceased. Also, it would help if you paused when you make funny comments to allow your audience to smile.
Give people eye contact
Maintain eye contact with your audience when presenting a eulogy speech. This helps maintain their concentration and enhances the eulogy’s effectiveness in facilitating the remembrance of the deceased.
Try to stand still
Stand still and don’t fidget when delivering a eulogy speech to show confidence and to avoid distracting your audience.
Eulogy Outline Examples
Additional Eulogy-Writing Tips
A eulogy speech is part of the last moments where people officially remember their passed loved one. This makes a eulogy an essential piece of writing that has to appeal to the emotional part of your audience about the late to settle their grief and help them pay their last respects. Therefore the more you are aware of how to go about preparing a eulogy, the better it is.
The following tips are critical to note when writing an effective eulogy:
A eulogy should recreate the deceased’s life in the memories of the family and friends through the use of pictures of the life the late had. For example, use pictures of them with family or during special events in their life, like wedding photos.
A eulogy does not explicitly require you to recreate precise dates when events happened, but creating timelines of the most critical times of the person’s life would help guide you on the contents to add or remove from the speech.
Keywords that best describe a deceased’s persona should be used in writing a eulogy. Hence it would be best to research befitting keywords that suit the nature and qualities of the deceased. For example, Andy was a ‘selfless and kind’ person to everyone.
Decide on the tone
Good communication relies heavily on the proper application of tone; hence, using a conversational tone when writing a eulogy is considered more appropriate to deliver a friendly feeling needed during that time of mourning.
Write word for word
It helps to write the entire eulogy word for word. Note that having main discussion points may not be effective since you may be overwhelmed and unable to generate the content you wanted to communicate under the outlines you made. Write a word for word and rehearse to memorize the eulogy content to make your delivery smooth and effective.
Involve friends and family members when writing a eulogy to get their feedback and insight that guide you in writing an appropriate and factual remembrance speech of the deceased. Also, rehearse in front of someone else to get their feedback to help sharpen your delivery skills and content quality.
Think about how you will close
The closing of the eulogy is essential, so plan for it. It could be as easy as just saying goodbye, thanking the congregation, or prepare a shore farewell sentence.
Eulogy Format Examples
Frequently Asked Questions
The person selected to deliver a eulogy at the funeral is always someone with good knowledge of the deceased and who had close relations with the late.
A eulogy is a brief speech that takes 3-5 minutes and should not exceed 10 minutes.