CHAMPION STRATEGIES – PUBLIC SPEAKING WORKSHOP MAY 27, 2021 – SPEAKING AT A MOMORIAL SERVICE
Use Visual Aids
This may sound like something you would use while giving a speech in English class, but visual aids do help. Books, photographs, or even a favorite baseball cap are good visual props and give you something to talk about. Remember, your speech will inspire others to talk about the deceased person too.
Specific Things to Say at a Memorial Service
When words fail you, try these tried-and-true tips for coming up with something to say should you be asked to speak at someone’s memorial.
Incorporate Poems and Sayings
You can also read a few funeral poems or recite a some of the deceased person’s favorite prayers or quotes during your memorial speech. While this ceremony is a celebration of life, it is also a time to say goodbye. Reading and hearing inspirational words can help not only you but those in attendance with their grief journeys. If you like, copy the poems and hand them out at the service as keepsakes. Remember that Memorial service readings are typically short and sentimental.
- Memorial death sayings are short, uplifting phrases or quotes from famous people.
- In celebration of moms, use Mother’s Day memorial poems.
- In memory of a grandfather, poems pay tribute to the oldest men in the family.
- For a Father’s Day memorial service, consider a poem in memory of dad.
- Ethnic poems about grief offer a multicultural perspective and celebrate the deceased’s belief system.
Use Multicultural Sayings
While the expression of grief is a largely personal experience, it can also be culturally expressed. In some cultures, death is viewed as a sad loss while in others it is a joyful awakening. Before offering any words specific to a particular culture, be sure you fully understand their meaning and typical context. Include culturally appropriate blessings or quotes in formal speeches. When offering words of comfort, consider phrases that are more celebratory or avoid getting too personal.
- The Buddhist focus on reincarnation warrants a peaceful phrase like, “I offer this good deed (name specific deed you have done) in the name of (deceased’s name).”
- “Her spirit is one with nature,” might be appropriate for a Native American service.
- A customary donation is required at Chinese wakes where you might say, “My deepest respects are paid.”
- In traditional Italian rituals, loved ones help the deceased leave the earth so you could say, “May he go forth from this world in peace.”
- Hindu cultures view death as a part of life, not a sad loss so an acceptable phrase is, “I wish her soul finds its next destination.”