40 Alternative Phrases or Sayings for ‘Rest in Peace’


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Saying ‘rest in peace’ is a way to show support and compassion to someone experiencing a loss. Though this phrase comes from the heart, it’s often thought of as a placeholder for a more in-depth type of condolences. Dating back centuries, ‘rest in peace’ or ‘RIP’ is a widespread cliche. 

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However, you might be looking for alternative phrases or sayings to take the place of this common message. Originally a religious sentiment about finding peace in Heaven, this is a one-size-fits-all way to encourage loved ones to find peace. Though generally accepted, you’ll want to consider the true intent behind your words. 

Words are more than idle phrases. They carry a lot of meaning. This is especially true in times of crisis, like after a loss. Seeking out meaningful, heartfelt ways to wish your loved one well after losing someone shows that you’re really there for them. Appropriate for a funeral service, sympathy message, or headstone, here are some alternative phrases or sayings for ‘rest in peace.’ 

‘Rest in Peace’ Alternatives to Share on Social Media

First, sharing sentiments on social media is becoming more common after a loss. These ‘rest in peace’ alternatives are short and sweet, perfect for honoring someone’s legacy on social media and beyond. 

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1. I’m so sorry for your loss.

Another common phrase that’s popular after a loss is this one. Though short and simple, it’s popular for good reason. Sometimes it’s best to say what you really mean. 

2. I’m here to support you.

Above all, showing support after a loss is often what your loved one needs to hear the most. Let your recipient know that you’re there for them.

3. May they be at peace.

Like ‘rest in peace,’ refer to the deceased directly to let their loved one know they’re in no more pain. For many, this is the most important thing they can hear.

4. My deepest condolences to you.

If there doesn’t feel like enough you can say, just send your condolences. You don’t need to sugarcoat your message more than this. 

5. They will be missed.

Finally, everyone wants to be missed when they’re gone. Promise to tell their loved one’s stories, keeping their legacy alive. 

‘Rest in Peace’ Alternatives to Put on a Grave

Similarly, it’s common to spot ‘Rest in Peace’ on graves. Along with RIP quotes, this can be truly meaningful when honoring someone who passed. However, this isn’t a very personal way to preserve someone’s true story. Instead, these alternatives below share more about who your loved one was. 

6. A beloved friend to all

Honoring someone for their best qualities is the most profound way to say goodbye. Make sure someone who was a friend to all is remembered. 

7. They rest in Heaven with the angels

Those we love rest in heaven in peace forever. If someone was a believer in God, this is a beautiful sentiment. 

8. Their love lasts an eternity

True love knows no endings. Your love for this person goes beyond the grave. 

9. He/she put family first

Again, honor something special about your loved one with a unique message for a headstone like this. If he or she always put family first, write their story. 

10. Testament to a beautiful life

Death doesn’t have to be a sad time. It can also be a celebration of how amazing life can be. 

‘Rest in Peace’ Messages for a Grandparent

Grandparents are some of our first teachers in life, and their wise words guide us through daily challenges. If your grandparents are no longer here, make sure they’re remembered and at peace with these ‘rest in peace’ messages for grandparents. 

11. I’ll remember your grandparent.

Specifically saying you’ll remember someone’s grandparent can mean so much to them. Whether you’re remembering your own grandparent or a loved one’s grandparent, this is a beautiful message. 

12. It’s not easy to let someone so special go.

Losing someone who means so much to you is always a challenge. It’s okay to admit that this is hard. You never know who needs to hear this. 

13. There are no forever goodbyes.

It was Gandhi who said “there are no goodbyes. Wherever you’ll be, you’ll be in my heart.” No words could be truer than this.

14. May your grandparents find eternal peace. 

Similar to saying ‘rest in peace,’ eternal peace is a less-religious way to encourage your recipient to cope with a loss. 

15. He/she was an inspiration to all. 

When someone inspires us to live a better life, they deserve to be remembered for who they truly were. 

‘Rest in Peace’ Messages for a Parent

Losing a parent is like losing a part of yourself. Though this is a difficult loss to overcome, there is peace in knowing they’ll always be with you. Whether you or someone you know lost a parent, make sure your message comes from the heart. 

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16. May they rest in eternal light.

‘Eternal light’ is a unique alternative to ‘rest in peace.’ Like the light from Heaven or the sun, it shines forever. 

17. Though it’s impossible, I will let go of the one I love so much.

Letting go of those you hold close can feel impossible. However, it’s important to accept when it’s time to move on.

18. My tender memories of them soften my grief.

Through your memories, those you love live forever. You can visit them in your mind and your cherished memories. 

19. They’re forever in my heart.

Holding a loved one’s memory in your heart makes them a part of your own story. This is something nobody can take away from you.

20. Always remembered and always missed.

When you remember those you love, you keep their story alive. Remembrance isn’t about pain. It’s about togetherness. 

‘Rest in Peace’ Messages for a Spouse or Partner

A spouse or partner is your other half. Without them, the world feels like a darker place. While brighter days are possible, don’t shy away from the grief of this profound loss. One of these ‘rest in peace’ messages goes the extra mile to honor what your recipient is experiencing. 

21. There are no words to capture my grief. 

If you can’t find the right words to say, it’s okay. This is a huge loss, and it’s better to be honest. 

22. We’re always with you.

Support is shown in so many ways. If you’re always there for someone in need, be there with them starting now. 

23. They left the world, but they’ll never leave your heart.

Again, remind your recipient that those they love are always closer than they think. 

24. The world lost a beautiful soul.

The world is less beautiful because this person is no longer in it. 

25. Your wife/husband/partner was an incredible person.

Honor the unique, incredible person your recipient’s partner truly was. 

‘Rest in Peace’ Messages for a Child

Few things in this world are more tragic than the loss of a child. While it’s impossible to understand the devastation this causes if you haven’t experienced it for yourself, you can make sure the parents feel supported and heard with these ‘rest in peace’ messages.

26. As brief as your child’s life was, it was full of joy.

No matter how brief a child lives in this world, each day is a blessing full of joy. 

27. Heaven is a beautiful place because they have [Name].

The beauty of Heaven shines brighter because the little one rests there at peace. 

28. Though only with us for a short while, we hold him/her in our hearts.

A child is held in our hearts for an entire lifetime. The grave can’t separate you. 

29. He/she meant the world. 

Parents want to know how much their child matters, no matter what it takes. Remind them of the significance of their little one’s life. 

30. Your child is with you always. 

Children are truly blessings, and they’re carried forever in your heart. 

‘Rest in Peace’ Messages for a Friend

Friends are a chosen part of our families. Losing a friend is like losing part of your memories, and it’s not always easy to find joy after this type of grief. Sharing a ‘rest in peace’ message for a friend is a reminder that those we love always stay close in spirit. 

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31. I love you to the moon and stars.

There are no bounds to your grief for a friend who you love to the moon and stars.

32. Missing you feels like a cold winter with no summer in sight.

Sometimes missing someone feels like an endless road. It’s okay if you can’t feel hope right now. Your grief is valid.

33. They left behind so much love. 

When those we love leave us, the feelings remain. Honoring this legacy keeps their memory close. 

34. I can’t believe my friend is gone. 

It’s okay if you’re experiencing anger or complex emotions following the loss of a friend. It’s not easy to adjust to this life change, but you’re never alone. 

35. Thank you, friend, you’ve given me so much. 

Thanking a friend or loved one for all they’ve done for you can help you find your own peace. 

‘Rest in Peace’ Messages for a Pet

Finally, pets are much more than furry friends. They’re members of our family. Though they’re only in our lives for a short while, there’s no limit to the grief we feel when they’re gone. Share one of these alternative ‘rest in peace’ messages for a beloved pet. 

36. You gave your pet so much happiness on earth. 

Pets are only with us for a little while, but they bring so much happiness. 

37. Sending love as your friend crosses the rainbow bridge.

The rainbow bridge is a mythical bridge that pets cross when they pass on. This is a beautiful place where you’ll be reunited in the future. 

38. [Pet’s name] was an amazing furry friend.

All pets deserve recognition for being good boys or girls. You’ll never forget what they meant to you. 

39. Your pet was lucky to have chosen you.

Our pets choose us, not the other way around. Though your time together was limited, you’re better for having them in your life. 

40. You lost a true friend. I know how special he/she was. 

Sometimes the grief of losing a pet can be profound. This is a special connection that’s hard to replace. 

Frequently Asked Questions: Rest in Peace

Now that you know the best alternative ‘rest in peace’ messages, let’s tackle some frequently asked questions. It’s not every day that you stop and think about the meaning behind your words. Though unusual, this is a powerful practice to get into the habit of doing regularly. 

What does ‘Rest in Peace’ mean?

To begin, this phrase was used to wish the deceased peace in Heaven or with God. Today, ‘RIP’ doesn’t have the same strong religious connotation. While some still understand it to mean rest in paradise or Heaven, it’s more of a general condolence message. It’s a way to say that you hope the deceased is resting peacefully in his or her afterlife. Whether this means in Heaven or a state without pain or sorrow, it’s a way to show support. 

There’s no way to know for certain what happens in the afterlife. This phrase makes no promises, but it helps mourners find their own version of peace. Grief takes endless forms, and people are free to find comfort in any way they can.

Is It OK to say ‘Rest in Peace?’ 

Next, it’s always acceptable to say ‘rest in peace’ to respond to a loss. If you’re unsure what to say, this might feel like the only ‘right’ thing. Still, ‘rest in peace’ can be impersonal and might not capture what you’re trying to say. Any message that comes from the heart makes a difference. 

Why do people say ‘Rest in Peace?’ 

Most people say ‘rest in peace’ simply because they don’t know what else to say. Sitting with the pain and awkwardness that is someone else’s grief is never easy. If you don’t know what to say, it’s simple to revert to well-known cliches. 

People say ‘rest in peace’ to honor the deceased and their loved ones. Though it might not be the most personal, meaningful phrase, it still carries its own weight. There’s a reason this phrase has traveled through the centuries. It’s a part of the human experience. 

Where does the phrase ‘Rest in Peace’ come from? 

Lastly, the phrase ‘rest in peace’ comes from the Latin phrase requiescat in pace. This literally translates to ‘may the deceased rest in peace.’ Dating back to the year 700, humans have said some variation of ‘rest in peace’ for over 1,300 years. Though it began as a way to express support for the deceased in Heaven, it no longer has a strong religious overtone. 

Grow Comfortable with Loss

Ultimately, the best way to support yourself and your loved ones through periods of grief is to grow comfortable with the idea of loss. This is a powerful human experience, and it’s something people have gone through since the dawn of time. Though it’s easy to turn away from grief, it demands to be felt. The more comfortable you are with mortality, the easier it becomes to support yourself and others. 

There’s never anything wrong with saying ‘rest in peace’ or ‘RIP.’ Still, knowledge is power. When you know how to leverage words to suit your inner feelings, you empower yourself to take control of your narrative. 

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