One of the biggest fears that people have when attending a funeral is that they don’t know what to say. After the loss of a loved one, sometimes well meaning friends and family won’t know the proper thing to say and will blurt out inappropriate sentiments. While these thoughts were meant to be of comfort, they aren’t always helpful or appropriate things to say to the bereaved.
Your presence alone at the service says how much you care about the family and the person who died. However, to verbally express your sympathy, one of the best things you can do is speak from your heart and express what you are feeling at the moment.
Below are some words that can be helpful to show your heartfelt sympathy and concern:
“We will miss “Mary” very much. She was very important to us.”
“We are here for you.”
“Words cannot express our sympathy.”
“I can only imagine how you must feel.”
“We will never forget “Mark.” He was so liked by everyone who knew him.”
“I can already see that your children are becoming such nice young adults, just like their mother/father.”
“I hope it is some comfort to you to know how highly regarded ‘Jim’ was by all how knew him.”
“Even though I didn’t know your wife/husband, I heard such wonderful things about her/him from other people.”
Be sure to offer your condolences to everyone in the family, and introduce yourself to family members that may not know you. Be understanding, and let the bereaved lead the conversation. By having a sense of what the person is feeling at that particular moment, you will be guided in knowing how to express your sympathy. Whatever you say, the family will appreciate your comfort and support of being there with them at their time of need.
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