Jewish Hospice Services


Our mission is to provide the highest possible level of physical, emotional and spiritual care with a keen understanding of the unique traditions and beliefs of our Jewish neighbors. Jewish Hospice Service at Barnabas Health Hospice and Palliative Care Center and the Van Dyke Hospice, serves the diverse cultural and religious needs of the Jewish Communities in the north and central New Jersey areas. Our programs are offered in coordination with the Joint Chaplaincy Committees of MetroWest, Central New Jersey, and Greater Monmouth County and are available to members of the Jewish community, regardless of affiliation. All members of the Jewish faith are welcome in Jewish Hospice Service, where services are provided with sensitivity to Jewish traditions and beliefs, and center on the person who is created in the image of God. We believe that the dying person suffers through the most critical transition of a lifetime and should be allowed to do so with dignity, with tenderness and with humanity.

Jewish values imply that a dying person’s family or caregiver should, if they are able, be encouraged and enabled to care for their relative either at home or in an appropriate facility. The patient and those who provide care for the patient, need help in preparing for death. Learning to handle dying often affects how the family will cope with mourning and bereavement. As we work with patients and their families, we are guided by the age - old Jewish concept of chesed shel emes - loving kindness. Although the control of pain is at the center of hospice theory and practice, we pay particular attention to addressing the heartache, fear and confusion of dying that often lead to feelings of suffering and anguish.

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Spiritual Factors

The end of life often elicits the need for spiritual or religious expression and with it, a sense of purpose and feelings of warmth and security. Our Hospice approach unites the efforts of medical, nursing and psychological staff with spiritual care, thus, allowing us to treat the whole person, not just individual symptoms or problems. This is accomplished by helping the patient deal with his or her relationship with God, however this is defined. This spiritual dimension must be considered in responding to diverse situations whether it is a holocaust survivor who is dying for a second time or the unaffiliated Jew who may now want greater closeness to Jewish life and culture. The traditional Jewish focus on extending and enhancing life is central to any approach and the Hospice, with its special focus, is often the link between the patient and Judaism, between the family and the synagogue or Jewish community.

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Families need help in dealing with anticipated grief, as well as loss and death. Jewish Hospice Service bereavement programs apply religious and psychological insight about how to live through a death and manage this period of transition. Jewish Hospice Service can also provide religious ministrations, psychological support, information about Jewish practices and customs of death and mourning, and supports the survivors during the bereavement period. Jewish Bereavement Support Groups are offered throughout the year.

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Hospice Services

Our rabbis, social work staff and volunteers are trained to understand Jewish culture, laws, traditions and values, and deliver a comprehensive assortment of spiritual care, chaplaincy and bereavement services, either in the family home or at a nursing home, hospital or other facility in New Jersey. Our staff understands the importance of family relationships, history (including experiences during the Holocaust), attitudes toward God, dietary and Sabbath customs, language and the cultural uniqueness of new immigrants. Our services reach out to the community at large by working directly with members of the community to educate Jewish audiences and facility staff about hospice care and the specialized care of the Jewish patient and family.

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