Following the death of a loved one, especially when the death is unexpected, making arrangements for the funeral and memorial service can be overwhelming. With so much to accomplish in the midst of grief, finding the right words to announce the death of a loved one can be a lot harder than you might think.
Funeral announcements are highly customizable, so there isn’t one right way to invite family, friends and acquaintances to a funeral or memorial service. However, most funeral announcements follow the same general guidelines to provide necessary information about the details of an upcoming service, wake or burial, while also confirming the sad news about someone’s death.
When meeting with the funeral director for the first time, bring up the subject of a funeral announcement along with the discussion for an obituary.
What to Include
When writing a funeral announcement, try to keep the message simple, especially if you plan to place the notice in the newspaper. Unlike an obituary, a funeral invitation does not always include the full biography of the deceased. Instead, a typical funeral announcement will include the following details:
- Name of the deceased and the city they lived in
- Dates of birth and death
- Date, time and location of funeral, wake or memorial service
- A personal note from the family, scripture or poem
While funeral invitations can be printed or published online, if the service will be private, they aren’t often made available to people outside of the deceased’s inner circle of family and friends. When they are reserved for intimate groups, funeral announcements can include more personal details and reflections from family.
The wording of the funeral announcement also will help set the tone for the service. A family that plans to host a celebration of life rather than a traditional funeral or memorial might take a more light-hearted approach rather than using somber language when drafting an announcement.
No matter the details you choose to include or tone you establish, it is important to ensure your message is concise and easy to read. Your announcement will be a primary source of information for people who wish to attend the service, so be sure to proofread the text and verify all details are accurate before sending out your announcements.
Though immediate family and other close relatives are often first notified by phone, a funeral announcement is later sent out confirming details about the service. While it’s important to send out announcements in a timely manner to allow out-of-town family and friends to make necessary travel arrangements, be sure you have finalized the date, time and location of the service first.
In today’s digital age, funeral announcements are routinely sent out electronically by email, text and even sometimes posted on social media. However, people who prefer to send a more formal and traditional announcement may opt to send a printed or engraved invitation by mail or pay to place a death notice in the local newspaper.
Of course, there is no right or wrong way to send your funeral invitation or make an announcement of someone’s passing. It is up to individual families to decide which method is the most appropriate depending on the situation.
There are many small details that go into arranging a funeral or memorial service. If you’re in need of assistance with making arrangements, including writing a funeral announcement or obituary, the experts at Bevis Funeral Home are here to help. Check out our online resources or give us a call today at (850) 385-2193.