Scott Borsky hands me his Holy Redeemer business card.

"I'm not your typical cantor," he says with a smile.

I'll say. Jewish clergy typically aren't identified with Catholic organizations.

And when Jewish families look for hospice services, "what pops into their minds isn't 'Holy Redeemer,' " he notes wryly.

Nonetheless, Borsky is a pastoral-care consultant for the Runnemede office of Holy Redeemer HomeCare and Hospice.

"We try to meet the spiritual needs of all our patients," hospice director Kelly Donaghy explains.

"About 2 percent of our patients are Jewish, and we saw the need. Scott is a really good addition to our staff. And he's taught our staff a lot about Jewish tradition."

Says Alicia Campbell, vice president of hospice and home-care services for the Holy Redeemer Health System, "Providing pastoral care to our patients and their families - regardless of their religious affiliation - is something [we] strive for. We have had a number of Jewish patients who expressed a desire for pastoral counseling."

A married father of a 10-year-old son, Borsky grew up in Cherry Hill.

He received cantorial training at Gratz College and benefited, in his words, from "25 years of mentorship from the finest cantors, rabbis, and Jewish scholars in Greater Philadelphia and South Jersey."

I catch up with the energetic cantor ("I have an office, but I'm never in it") at the Katz Jewish Community Center in Cherry Hill.

Borsky is nothing if not enthusiastic; he even offers to jump into the JCC pool if that will make for a better photo.

No wonder he's got 5,000 friends - the limit - on Facebook.

"Being a cantor combines my two callings and my two gifts from God: music and Judaism," Borsky says. "My love for Judaism and music blossomed early in my youth. I was blessed with the ability to love God through music."

Although he sings at religious and ceremonial functions - and teaches music at the Kellman Brown Academy in Voorhees - his primary service to hospice patients and their families involves counseling and spiritual guidance, rather than vocalizing.

"Even if during their lifetime a person has been secular, as they get older, they tend to become more traditional," he says, adding, "More and more folks no longer belong to a house of worship, for whatever reason. But they still have a spark of spirituality ingrained in them.

"People approach me all the time about services for a family member who is not particularly religious. They may not know what traditional means, but whatever traditional is is what they want."

A 2013 survey commissioned by the Jewish Federation of Southern New Jersey found that more than half of the respondents were unaffiliated with a synagogue.

"People who are unaffiliated still need outreach from clergy at various points in their lives," Borsky says.

"It doesn't have to be a crisis; maybe they're getting married, they're having a child, they want to bar or bat mitzvah a child. They need the guidance and experience of clergy to take them on the journey through that life-cycle event."

And when the event is the final one, "people tend to become more traditional," Borsky notes. "Even someone who has always been secular, their faith becomes stronger."

I'd have to agree. Not long before his death 21 years ago, my own father received enormous comfort from his parish priest.

But isn't working with the dying a terribly, if not unbearably, sad business?

"It's filled with grace and mercy," Borsky says. "I'm giving people the guidance they need."

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