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Simple Sympathy

How to Help Send Out Sympathy Thank You Notes

in Supporting Grief

You can help a recently bereaved friend or relative by offering to help with the sympathy thank you notes. Many grieving individuals find that they could use a helping hand with this project. It may even be a burden to them. They want to send out timely and courteous thank you cards, but they don’t quite feel up to it.
The following advice will help you not only complete the thank you notes for them, but also take advantage of an opportunity to comfort and encourage your grieving loved one.
Two major benefits of writing sympathy and funeral thank you notes are:
• Taking a moment to reflect on all of the caring people who took the time to send their sympathy.
• Having a chance to express our gratitude which may bring some encouragement to us as well.
The first step is to gather all of the sympathy cards and letters that were sent out. Take some time to reread each one to them and ask what they’d like to say to each person. Write down ideas on a sheet of scrap paper. Before you write the message in the card, read it out loud to see if they like it.

Tips for Thank You Sympathy Cards

• Ideally replies to sympathy should be sent out two to three weeks after the service.
• Traditionally sympathy thank you messages should be hand-written.
• It is fine to write one or two sentences on a preprinted card.
• Double check that the names and addresses are correct.

Who to Send Funeral Thank You Cards To

Send thank you to people who sent a gift, flowers, letter of sympathy or who wrote a hand-written message in a condolence card. Etiquette experts agree that it is unnecessary to send thank you cards for preprinted sympathy cards. Ask the grieving individual that you are helping, who they’d like to send a thank you card to. Some people send a thank you to everyone involved in the funeral and in caring for their departed loved one, such as:

• Pallbearers
• Clergy
• Transportation Services
• Doctors
• Nurses
• Hospice Staff

Ideas for Sympathy Thank You Messages

Thank you for your thoughtfulness and kind gesture of sympathy.
Thanks for providing help during this difficult time. We appreciate the house cleaning you did and all of your help in caring for our out of town guests. Your kindness was a great blessing to us.
Thank you for your thoughtfulness in sending the beautiful bouquet of lilies. I appreciate your kind support.
Thank you for your kind sympathy card. It was a comfort to the whole family.

Alternatives to Writing Thank You Sympathy Cards

• Write a public thank you notice in your local newspaper.
• Send out thank you e-cards, to any number of recipients easily.
• Use the pre-printed sympathy cards provided by the funeral home and just sign them.
• Write a thank you message to all friend and family on a memorial website.