Q:

What is the best method to deliver a condolence message?

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Quick Answer

The best method to deliver a condolence message is via a letter or sympathy card to the family. A sincere letter or card offers people the opportunity to write a personal message expressing sympathy and include an offer to help the mourning family. People can also offer condolences in person, but the act may seem too intrusive when families are making funeral arrangements or coping with grief.

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Full Answer

A condolence message written in a card shows the family that they have support, thoughts and prayers from well wishers. A sympathy letter should include a message of sorrow such as "We are sorry for your loss" or "I know this is a difficult time for you" to validate the tragedy or death. Families often appreciate condolence messages that offer details about how the sender knew the deceased or written expressions of what was admired about the person. Letter writers can detail an experience or memory that shows adoration for the deceased.

A sympathy letter may also include an offer of assistance during the difficult time. Some people offer to cook meals, begin a prayer chain for the family or help with the funeral arrangements. Families are then given the option to contact the letter writer if support is desired.

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