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What is a Memorial Card?

Monday, 16 November 2020  |  Admin

Memorial cards, also known as in-memoriam cards and sometimes mourning or funeral cards, are a personalised keepsake that is distributed at funerals or memorial services. They have a Catholic origin, although are now used within a variety of religious and non-religious ceremonies. If you are looking to find out more about the history of in-memoriam cards then we have a separate blog about their history which you can view here. Funeral or mourning cards are collected as a way to honour and remember the deceased, sometimes being kept in people’s purses and wallets or along with their other important documents.


What is written in a memorial card?

Memorial cards traditionally include a photograph of the deceased, their date of birth and date of death, the date of the funeral, and a variety of other text such as poems, verses and prayers, and thank you messages.

Another useful detail to put into a memorial card is the cemetery and plot where the deceased is buried, or if you have opted for a cremation then the area in which you have (or intend to) spread the ashes. This is actually a very practical detail to include, especially if you have chosen a wallet funeral card, because it allows the holder to visit the place of rest any time they desire without having to ask yourself or other friends or family members for the location and potentially causing unnecessary upset.

Additionally, it is common to include a short message from the family or close friends of the deceased, along with a touching memorial phrase such as ‘Rest in Peace’, ‘Forever in our heart’, or ‘Gone but never forgotten’.


Types of memorial cards

Folding Memorial Cards: Very similar to a classic card you might find in a shop, such as birthday or congratulatory cards. These traditionally include a nice image on the front, either religious imagery or something scenic or symbolic, sometimes an image of the deceased. More often an image of the deceased is included on the inside along with their date of birth and death, and a form of eulogy, whether that is a message from the family, or a poem or prayer. The difference between a folding memorial card and a traditional card you would find in a shop is that the in-memoriam cards will usually include either text or an image (or both) on the back of the card too, in order to utilise all of the space.

Memorial Bookmarks: These are double sided slips of paper, and as the name suggests they are a similar size and shape to a bookmark. They are a great option if you want to keep the information more succinct and easier to read. Although they aren’t as easy to display as a folding memorial card, memorial bookmarks are a more practical keepsake as they are stored easier and can be used as actual bookmarks, making them a popular option.

Wallet Cards: Wallet cards are a very traditional form of memorial card that became particularly popular during the Victorian era where they were used as exclusive invitations to funerals and as a keepsake to prove your high social status. Thankfully funerals are a more inclusive affair these days, but wallet cards remain highly popular due to their practicality. These are roughly the size of a business card, and perfect for people who want to include a short prayer or memorial phrase rather than a lengthy poem or eulogy. As the name implies, they are perfect for keeping in a wallet or purse, which makes them a great way to keep your memories of the deceased close to your heart.


If you want to know more information about memorial cards then you can read our blogs about the history of them, or our suggestions about choosing a photo for a memorial card.

Here at Memorial Card Shop we offer all the types of memorial cards that are listed in this blog, as well as thank you cards for funerals, that are all fully customisable. We even offer a free sample pack so you can assess the quality of our products for yourself and choose which type of in-memoriam card if best for you. If you require any advice or further information about memorial cards then please don't hesitate to call us on 03450 542 861 or email


Tags: Memorial Cards, In-Memoriam Cards, Wallet Cards