Can you define sadness without writing anything

Letters of condolence: 5 templates, 8 tips + 20 condolence cards

A letter of condolence expresses compassion and is intended to give strength to loved ones. But most people find it difficult to find the right words when it comes to death. We have 8 tips with everything you need to know about letters of condolence and both templates and sayings for a tactful expression of condolences.

When relatives mourn the loss of a loved one, sensitivity is required. A letter of condolence, for example in the form of a condolence card, gives strength to the bereaved and should always be formulated with care. For this reason, we have put together valuable tips, templates and sayings for you that will help you to tactfully express your condolences. Here's how you can help yourself and others say goodbye.

8 tips for a letter of condolence

8 tips for a letter of condolence

Below are eight important tips that you should definitely keep in mind when writing a condolence letter. Death is a sensitive issue and there are many things that could be perceived as inappropriate. So make sure that you are not committing a faux pas with your memorial card, but that you are supporting the family properly.

The right time

Don't wait too long to write a letter of condolence. Participation in the death of a person applies above all to the bereaved - especially if you may not have known the deceased at all, you should keep an eye on what is important for the relatives now. If you wait too long with a letter of condolence, it's not nice for loved ones to be reminded of it after days of grief. So if you see an obituary notice in the newspaper or hear of the death of a loved one you know, react quickly and send your letter off as soon as possible.

Always be sincere

Artificial formulations and stiff words are less comforting than a credible letter of condolence. You should really mean what you write. It usually helps to just be open and frank about what you think. Maybe write a sample text and edit it before you write it down. You should definitely avoid theatrics. A grief card should be comforting, not heartbreaking. Sometimes it helps to write a text or two in advance. This is how you find lovely words that come from the heart and are still appropriate.

Take your time to write

Take your time to write

A letter of condolence should never be written on the side or under time pressure. Not only could unsightly spelling mistakes creep in, it also takes time to find tactful formulations. Also, your handwriting should be legible, which cannot be done in a hurry. It is especially nice when you choose a reverent mourning phrase and that also takes time. So plan at least half an hour, better an hour, for your condolences. Here you can learn to write better.

Less is more

Your mourning card should be simple and for the most part dispense with embellishments. That means: no circles, squiggles, bows, glitter or bright colors. Otherwise you could give the wrong impression. The text should also be written simply and neatly and the card should not be overloaded. Think about what you want to write beforehand and how you can divide this space. It usually looks ugly when there are large, irregular spaces on the map. If there is still space, a nice mourning quote is suitable. However, if you already have enough text, you shouldn't overdo it with sayings, otherwise it can quickly appear ridiculous and overloaded.

Contents of letters of condolence and condolence cards

Contents of letters of condolence and condolence cards

It is always nice when a letter of condolence shows both condolences and encourages courage. A loving, short anecdote from the life of the deceased is always something beautiful. A photo is also a nice touch for the family. If you didn't know the person very well, devotional words that relate to the loved one are also useful. Sayings and quotes are good ways to fill one side of the card and respond to the saying on the other. Say there in your own words what exactly you mean by the saying. We have a few basic building blocks for you that you can always embed in a memorial card.

Also offer your help or contribute to the funeral fund. A voucher for a cemetery gardener or a flower arrangement for the funeral is also a nice touch. However, find out beforehand whether it is an urn burial. In this case, numerous flower arrangements are usually undesirable for reasons of space.

  • My condolences for your loss.
  • I am with you in my thoughts.
  • Take the time you need to grieve with your family.
  • When I heard it, I was deeply affected.
  • I wish you a lot of strength in this difficult time.
  • I'm always there for you.
  • Greeting at the end: With deep compassion, in silent remembrance, in warm sympathy, in friendship

Write the return address on the envelope

A return address should always be on a letter of condolence. On the one hand, it could be that you have an old address and, on the other hand, the family would like to thank you. It is not uncommon for a letter of condolence to be followed by a thank you card. So spare the mourners the search for your address and write it down directly on the envelope.

Bring a letter of condolence or send it as a condolence card

Bring a letter of condolence or send it as a condolence card

As you stand closer to the bereaved, definitely consider visiting to deliver your letter of condolence. It is also common to bring something to eat as loved ones may be stressed and not have much time to cook for themselves.

If you are less close to the relatives, you should send out your memorial card. Too many visits from strangers can be quite annoying in such a phase. If you want to do something more than just ’send a letter, you can also call the family. Older people in particular will be happy to receive a call.

It is critical when expressions of condolence are sent via WhatsApp and Co. This may be common among young people, but the older generation may find it tactless. In addition, these media have not yet reached all generations. So it is definitely advisable to write a letter, especially with older people. In addition, it is generally nicer to hold something in your hand so that you can read it later than a digital, fleeting message.

Write by hand

It is always better if a card is handwritten. However, you should make sure that it is legible. If a grief card cannot be deciphered, it loses its supportive effect. In the event that your writing is really illegible, you can also print out the text and place it on the card. However, it is always nicer when the loved ones see that you took the effort to handwrite the card.

Condolence & condolence card templates

Condolence & condolence card templates

Put yourself in their place in order to find the right words and, especially with friends or colleagues, stay aloof rather than emotional. It is important to not only focus on the grief and pain, but also to give a ray of light and to include a few positive words in your condolences.

The following texts are templates for various types of condolence. They are only sample texts and can be easily paraphrased. So you can customize it to match who you're writing a memorial card to. Perhaps the right sample text for you is already included.

For private contacts

In private contacts, you can be a little more emotional and formulate less distantly. A personal message, a thank you message, or a little anecdote that brings back a fond memory is always a good idea. Always think about how the bereaved person is feeling and try to be as empathetic as possible.

To a friend who lost her father

And my soul tensed
spread their wings
flew through the silent lands
as if she was flying home ...
(Joseph von Eichendorff)

Your papa was a great person. He will live on in our hearts forever. My sincere condolences. I am always there for you and will support you in anything if you need me. I love you and think about you all the time.

To an acquaintance who has lost his partner

Do not speak sorrowfully of my departure, but close your eyes and you will see me among you, now and always.
(Khalil Gibran)

I can hardly believe it. My sincere condolences.

I will miss Anna and her cheerful manner infinitely. It doesn't leave emptiness, but colorful memories and stories that we can tell with a smile on our face. We should live like she did every day and be grateful that we had such a great role model.

I am there for you in these difficult times. Get in touch when I can do something.

To the cousin who lost his mother

When we die out of this world
So we leave the place, we don't leave life.
(Nikolaus Lenau)

I think about what your mom, my aunt Frieda always said. When she leaves, we should think back to her with a smile so that she always stays in our midst.

She loved life and wouldn't want us to sink into deep sadness. I think of you and wish you a lot of strength. I am always there when you need me.

For professional contacts

Letters of condolence to professional contacts are usually sent on behalf of the entire college. Since everyone probably has a different relationship to relatives and there is often a certain distance in professional contacts anyway, this should also be reflected in the condolence card.

To the husband of a deceased colleague

The news of her wife's death shocked us very much. We wish you our condolences and a lot of strength in this difficult time.

Your wife was a dear colleague and valuable employee with us and we will miss her sorely.

In deep concern


To the colleague who lost his wife

Did not pass
Is transformed
What was.
(Rainer Maria Rilke)

We can hardly imagine how difficult this time must be for you. We are deeply affected and wish you a lot of strength. Take all the time you need Our thoughts are with you.

In devotion
Your colleagues

20 tactful mourning sayings for condolences cards

20 tactful mourning sayings for condolences cards

A memorial or a quote on a memorial card can serve as inspiration for your own text, but it must also be carefully selected. Always keep in mind that the saying should fit the relatives and include in your decision whether you knew the deceased or not. Only one saying should never be on your card. Always make the effort to formulate a few lines of your own and of course to sign them personally. We have put together some tactful sayings for you and even added which lines you could write about them for some. Here you can find more sad sayings for every occasion.

  1. The most beautiful monument a person can get is in the hearts of those around them.
    (Albert Schweitzer)
  2. When a person has unexpectedly left this world, one feels a void that can last for a very long time. But it is good to know how many people have valued him.
  3. What you have deep in your heart
    cannot be lost through death.
    (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe)
  4. I wish you a lot of strength for this time to get through the dark days and a lot of courage to look forward to the bright days in joyful memories.
  5. Memory is a paradise from which we cannot be driven.
    (Jean Paul)
  6. We have wounds that don't heal and scars that stay with us. We have hearts in deep sorrow, but love remains.
  7. The only important thing in life
    are the traces of love
    that we leave behind
    when we go away.
    (Albert Schweitzer)
  8. A person does not die until we have forgotten him. We could never forget X, so he will never die. He / she lives on in our heads and we feed on the great memories.
  9. She is now free
    and our tears
    wish her luck.
    (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe)
  10. Losing a loved one is hard, but it feels good to know how many people have cherished you.
  11. The more beautiful and full the memory
    the harder the separation is.
    But gratitude turns the agony of memory into silent joy.
    One does not carry the past beautiful like a sting,
    but like a precious gift in itself.
    (Dietrich Bonhoeffer)
  12. Paralyzed and still walking, blind and still seeing. Deaf and still hearing, that is a person who grieves.
    Take all the time you need to grieve. I will wait to rebuild you. Life is different now than it was before, but I will accompany you on this new path.
  13. But if death is, as it were, emigration
    from here to another place,
    and if what you say is true
    that all who have died are there
    what a greater happiness there is than this
  14. My condolences for your loss. I am with you in my thoughts.
  15. The grief that doesn't speak gnaws quietly at the heart until it breaks.
    (William Shakespeare)
    I think of you during this sad time and I am always there when you want to talk about it. I support you and will be happy to help you with everything you need.
  16. And my soul tensed
    spread their wings
    flew through the silent lands
    as if she was flying home ...
    (Joseph von Eichendorff)
  17. Sadness flies on the wings of time.
    (Jean de La Fontaine)
  18. What good is a person
    gives out into the world
    is not lost.
    (Albert Schweitzer)
  19. When we die out of this world
    So we leave the place, we don't leave life.
    (Nikolaus Lenau)
  20. When you look at the sky at night, you will feel as if all the stars are laughing, because I live on one of them, because I laugh on one of them.
    (Antoine de Saint-Exupéry)