What is a Eulogy?

The dictionary definition of a eulogy is this;

"A speech or piece of writing that praises someone or something highly, especially a tribute to someone who has just died"

Ever since I first started my career as a celebrant, one of the things I love most (and there are many!) is writing someone's eulogy. I love finding out all about the person, I spend a long time with their family, asking all kinds of questions. The journalist in me always looking for that nugget of information, which sometimes a family has taken for granted about their loved one, but can quite often by hugely significant.

Before I go and see a family, I always send through a list of things for them to have a think about. These include;

  • Childhood, parents, siblings, what they were like as a child, where they went to school etc.

  • Career.

  • Any special qualifications or achievements, things they were really proud of.

  • Hobbies and interests - sports fan, gardener, animal lover etc.

  • Family and friends.

  • Special memories.

  • Funny stories?

  • Things they'll be remembered for?

  • What kind of character they were, things that made them laugh.

  • Describe them in three words.

These are always just a starting point to get the family talking and sharing memories with each other, it also means they can chat to other family members of friends, or draw up a list of other people I can chat too.

If there are family or friends who can't make the meeting, then I'm always more than happy to give them call and get their memories.

For me, a eulogy is the ultimate tribute and delivering one is an honour. It's a chance to celebrate all the things that made your loved one who they were; the things you loved about them most, all the little personality traits that made them who they were.

Each eulogy is different, because each person is different and what might be appropriate to include for one person, isn't for another.

One thing that never ceases to amaze me, are the things that people have achieved in their lives, and the impact they've had on those around them, even if they don't always realise it.

A eulogy doesn't always have to delivered by a celebrant or minister, some people prefer to write and deliver them for themselves or get a family member to do it. For others they prefer the celebrant to do it and either is absolutely fine.

If you'd like to know more about what I do, then please feel free to contact me, either via my website or e-mail Katiethecelebrant@gmail.com

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