How To Write A Funeral Program

How to Create a Warmly Written Funeral Program in 4 Steps

A funeral service is a deeply personal event that requires intricate planning. However, one detail that you cannot overlook is the funeral program. This handout is given to each guest, provides an overview of service proceedings, and features a loving word about the person who passed away.

Although funeral professionals often create these programs, you may be planning to write one yourself. If so, this guide will help you write a heartfelt program for the upcoming funeral service for your loved one.

Before we dive into each step, this quick checklist will help you gather what you need to get started.

  • Input from close loved ones like children, partner, or best friend
  • Final wishes, date of birth and date of death, obituary, and photo
  • Information about the service, date, time, and expected number attending
  • Supplies including program paper, ink, and decorative accents

Now let's get into the four steps you should follow to get from planning to printing without additional stress.

Create Custom Funeral Programs!

1. Outline and Write the Information for the Funeral Program

    While the presentation is key, what is said in the program is vital. Writing the program is arguably the most challenging part, so you should start with this first. Not all services follow the same format, but the main components of a funeral program typically include:

    • Cover with the name and a photo of the deceased, dates of life and death, short statement or quote, and service date, time, and location
    • Order of proceedings, which includes opening remarks, tributes from family and friends, eulogy, musical prelude and interludes, and acknowledgment
    • Copy of the obituary or a new short biography summarizing the life of the deceased
    • Any additional personal details of the deceased that pay special tribute to them

    You can start with outlining what is needed, writing what you know, and filling in the rest as you gather more information. When you write the order of proceedings, it's also best to incorporate the names of the speakers and performers where appropriate. However, listing the approximate beginning and end times for each segment is optional.

    Once you have finalized the details, review and edit the program to ensure correct spelling and grammar. Also, have another person check it to make sure it sends the message you want to be received and that it conveys the right tone.

    2. Decide on a Layout and Size

    The amount of information you want to include, along with budgeted costs, should help you determine the size and layout of the funeral program.

    The standard letter size single-fold program provides four pages, front and back. However, if you want a different layout, you can opt for a trifold. Or, if you need more space, an 8-page booklet would be optimal.

    Once you have your layout and size selected, you can start arranging the written information to complement the flow of the service.

    3. Choose Your Design

      If you aren't tech-savvy or using design software, it's okay to keep the design simple. For example, you can opt for borders and accents as opposed to full-page elements.

      Otherwise, you can purchase specialty paper with existing designs, so all you have to do is print. There are also plenty of helpful program templates that are available for download. However, you might want a customized look that genuinely embodies the deceased's personality. In that case, you can use a professional funeral program design service.

      Nevertheless, choose font styles and colors that complement each other to allow for easy reading. Keep in mind that dark fonts go best with light backgrounds and vice versa.

      4. Print and Review

      Whether you are using a home printer or a printing shop, you'll want to test print before fulfilling the entire batch. Review the initial printed version to make sure it turned out the way you wanted it. Check the fold lines up, and everything fits on the page correctly. Now is also an excellent time to correct any eye-catching mistakes.

      Once everything looks good to go, print the rest and add creative finishing touches like ribbons at the fold.

      Create Custom Funeral Programs!

      Help Is Here if You Need It

      While creating a funeral program is simple, this crucial task is also a significant undertaking. Here at, we strive to alleviate the stress of creating custom funeral programs. You can use our online design application to create a unique one-of-a-kind funeral program. Contact us if you need help getting started.