Creating a funeral program for your loved one can be a therapeutic task after they have passed. Remembering and highlighting special moments in their lives will help you with the bereavement process, and this can be done while creating a funeral program in the comfort of your home with the support of your family and friends.
Writing and compiling anecdotes, quotes, and stories about your loved one is best done with those who were close to the deceased. Have everyone sit down with a pad and pen and write down your cherished memories. Go around in a circle and read and collect your favorite stories about your loved one. From these stories and quotes choose the best to highlight their life.
Now it is time to design your funeral program template. The first step is to pick a background. If printing cost is a concern, I recommend just making a black and white funeral program, however, if you have a larger budget it is nice to make a full color background with a large portrait of your loved one. If you do not have a background photo to use that is digitized and fitting with the interests or lifestyle of the deceased, it is easy to find high quality photos to use on flickr. Just make sure you search for photos with a creative commons license that allows you to adapt or modify the image.
I make all of my funeral program templates in Microsoft Word. I start by laying down the background image, then I create 4 big text boxes. Two on the first page, and two on the second. The text boxes should bisect the page so that when it is folded in half the boxes will appear to frame the text on the page like it might in a book. The right half on the first page will be the front, and the left half will be the back. Make sure you create a second page in Word and this will be the inside of the program.
A trick to help move the portrait of your loved one wherever you like on the page is to create a separate text box and add the image inside of it. From there you can move the text box wherever you like, and no be dependent on Word’s weird image formatting. Also, if you would like to make the photo blend a little better, you can select it, and then change the picture shape to an oval or rounded rectangle. You can also add a border to make it pop off the page, and look like it is framed.
After you have all of your funeral program template set up, it is time to fill in all of the text. The time and location of the service, an obituary, stories or quotes collected from your brainstorming session, poems, and bible verses. With all of this text and information added, you will have created a high quality funeral program that will be a cherished keepsake for the friends and family of the deceased.
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