At Shaker Heights, OH funeral homes, the eulogy is often a centerpiece of a funeral service. It is an opportunity to draw a portrait of a life and sharing the things about that person that made them so special and so loved. It can seem like a daunting task, but there are some guidelines that can make it easier.
One guideline is to recognize how important the eulogy is to the family and to those who have gathered to mourn. Write it down. It may be painful to put the words to paper as you are also mourning the loss of someone you love and care about, but even if you’re a very good public speaker, you will not be able to memorize the kind of eulogy you’ll want to give. And, if you’re not comfortable with public speaking, having it written down will give you reassurance that you won’t falter.
Eulogies should be positive. They are not just a laundry list of all the great qualities of the deceased, but instead they are stories that show intimacy, friendship, and relationships. Tell stories, share memories, talk about how the deceased interacted well with everyone that they crossed paths with. Even good memories are hard to talk about when you’re grieving, but do it anyway. The family of the deceased will have a lot of comfort from the words you share about their loved one.
Another guideline is to include something you learned from the deceased. It might have been an example they set or the way they did something that clicked with you and changed you for the better. This gives insight into who the deceased was and how much of an impact they had on your life and the lives of others.
If you are the only one giving a eulogy, then you can plan for a presentation of five to ten minutes. However, if there are several people giving eulogies, plan for a time limit of three minutes. Practice while timing yourself to make sure you don’t go over the time limit.
When you start your eulogy, introduce yourself and describe your relationship with the deceased. There may be some people at the funeral service who don’t know you are, even if you’re an immediate family member. This is a good time, as well, to thank everybody for coming to the funeral service and let them know that the family appreciates them being there.
When giving the eulogy, speak slowly and enunciate your words. There are two reasons for this. One is obviously that you want everybody to understand what you’re saying. But the second reason is that it helps calm public-speaking jitters and nerves and allow the mourners to be fully attentive to your reflection on the life of the deceased.
Make eye contact with the mourners as you give the eulogy. Although you’re reading the eulogy, you want to stay engaged with everyone who is listening. Eye contact will do that. You don’t necessarily have to look at anyone specific, but you should look in both directions of the room occasionally.
End your eulogy with a favorite memory of the deceased and then offer encouragement and support to the rest of the mourners who are grieving with you.
For more information about eulogies at Shaker Heights, OH funeral homes, our compassionate and experienced team at E. F. Boyd & Son Funeral Home is here to help. You can visit our funeral home at 25900 Emery Road, Warrensville Heights, OH 44123, or you can call us today at (216) 831-7906.