The Mission of Family

Aditya B | Physician |

While the term family is generally used to imply members of the same kin or sharing a common ancestor, it can also be used in a broader sense.

Indeed, Webster’s definitions range from “group of people who are related to each other” to “a group of people united by certain convictions or a common affiliation”. All definitions of the word convey the same sentiment: a sense of unity and connection between individuals. At the deepest level, a family represents a group of people who are united by a common thread, and who support each other in pursuit of their goals and convictions.

I am exceptionally fortunate to be a part of the ever-growing MGH family, which is united in its mission to advance knowledge and rapidly translate discovery into exceptional, personalized cancer care for our patients. It is this mission that bonds us together, not only in Boston or New England, but nationally and internationally as well. If we continue to work as a cohesive unit with a shared goal, there is no doubt that this family will make meaningful progress against cancer now and moving forward.


  1. Through my lung cancer surgery and treatment, I knew I had to embrace this journey and welcome all the support offered to me by my partner and our busy adult kids. Until then, I was never the kind of person who would asked for help, and often just kept things to myself offering help to others. When I was diagnosed with cancer, I was overwhelmed with emotion by my family of friends both in my personal and work life who helped carry me through this difficult time. I always had a friend there through my healing to laugh with me, cry with me, and rationalize this new normal I was about to live. That love and their positive thoughts and energy has made a world of difference in my healing and moving on in life. Although some family and friends turned their back, the Universe gave me what I needed during this time. I am so grateful to my family of friends, my a loving partner, and our beautiful children. Love and light to you all!

    Karen C | | 8:54am

  2. I just praying for those ppl diagnose with cancer, may god give them the strength to fight for their health,
    I remember when my husband was diagnose with cancer , it took my whole entire fam to suffer that was on 1992 /2000, ok he did past away,so I suffer, my whole fam suffer because cancer doe’snt choose,then on 20011 my granddaughter was diagnose with,LUKEMIA, another strike from cancer ,thanks the LORD, he has been taking care of it she is on remission now but we r still traumatize ,even that she is on remission ok ,now one week before thanksgiving my niece has diagnose with breast cancer, is all in one , but god is ower doctor hell be next to those ppl ,suffering from cancer god is good may god bless all those fam and plase pray do lots of pray and we will survive and see those sinbling who r suffering from it survive because a family toghether will win the battle , god bless ya’ll

    carmen cordero | | 10:07am

  3. My family is my life line, my God and Jesus are my faith and hope. I am battling Breast cancer for the second time, not a reoccurrence , a new cancer! Unfortunately I am a carrier of BRCA 1 and so far many, many family members as well. I will beat this! My family needs me here for several years yet! I lost my beautiful sister 2 1/12 years ago to ovarian cancer ( yes, part of the mutant gene is breast, ovarian, colon and pancreas) so my FAMILY and I are very close, and one bittersweet note to all this, it did bring us closer and we don’t take each other for granted. I Love Life and embrace the dArn Chemo bc it will remove my cancer along with my faith in God and his Son. I pray all of you find yourself Healthy, Happy and free of this horrible disease!

    Lisa Pelkey | | 5:52pm

  4. The word “family” does take on many different connotations. Without those extentions of self, be it blood or extended, fighting cancer would be next to impossible. My “ohana” is my crutch my stabililizer and they give me the will to go on when I feel like giving up. My “faith” family prays without ceasing; my “blood” family gives me a kick in the behind when needed; my “medical” family – well, that goes without saying. I literally and probably would not be here without theirvknowledge, know how and expertise. Some have even become fast friends. I love them all, even if I don’t always say so – I do in my heart!!! The hugs you give are so important – don’t ever stop. At this time of thanksgiving know how very thankful I am for your existence. ♡♡♡♡

    Sharon Saunders | | 6:15am

  5. The MGH family definitely made my list of things in thankful for this Thanksgiving – not only for the outstanding research and for the treatment that I have received, but also for the genuine CARE that I have received. These are a lot of good people doing incredibly challenging work – and doing it with grace. Grateful that this “family” has my back!

    Betsy B | | 10:01am

  6. Using the term family would need to grow on its own. Some treatment centers are awful and would use it in an attempt to make their poor service sound better then it is.

    debbie | | 6:39pm

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