1.  Prayer Practice for Sitting in the Compassionate Gaze of Jesus
  2.  Prayer Practice for a Thankful Heart
  3.  Four Prayers
  4.  Compassion Examen
  5.  Act of Spiritual Communion
  6.  ‘First Friday’ Prayer

Some Principles for Compassion
these are intended to offer a means of reflecting on some of the ways in which it might be possible to develop a compassionate heart.  For ease of use they are divided into daily portions but are also separated into sections which might be read together.


A Prayer for Companions
Merciful God,
as we are embraced by your Divine Compassion
found in the Hearts of Jesus and Mary,
so may we live with that same Compassion
for all people and the whole of Your Creation.
This we ask in the name of Him whose Love enfolds all,
Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.


If you are familiar with the practice of Christian meditation or follow the teachings of people like Dom John Main, Br. Laurence Freeman and the World Community for Christian Meditation* you might like to use this phrase as a mantra:

Create in me a clean heart, O God;
and renew a right spirit within me. (Ps. 51:10)


First Principle and Foundation
Lord, my God, when Your love spilled over into creation,
You thought of me.
I am from love, of love, for love.
Let my heart, O God, always recognize,
cherish and enjoy your goodness in all of creation.
Direct all that is me to your praise.
Teach me reverence for every person, all things.
Energize me in your service.
Lord God, may nothing ever distract me from your love…
neither health nor sickness
wealth nor poverty
honour nor dishonour
long life nor short life.
May I never seek nor choose to be
other than you intend me to be.

Sr. Marie Schwann CSJ

Prayer for those who suffer
Mother of Sorrows,
who stood by the Cross of your Son,
Have compassion on ….
and all who suffer,
and remember them to your Son
that he may heal and restore them.  Amen.

Collect for the Feast of Divine Compassion
Almighty God,
whose Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,
was moved with compassion for all who had gone astray
and with indignation for all who had suffered wrong:
inflame our hearts with the burning fire of your love,
that we may seek out the lost,
have mercy on the fallen
and stand fast for truth and righteousness;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.
(Celebrating Common Prayer)

Prayer for departed Companions
Compassionate God,
have mercy on the soul of (all departed Companions)
and all whose faith is known to you.
Bring them to the joys of your eternal Kingdom
where you live and reign,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Amen.


Prayer for an open, compassionate heart
give me strength to live in this world
without resorting to half-truths,
or simplistic viewpoints
which wilfully neglect the complexity
inherent in many situations.
Give me an open heart, grace,
and compassion where I lack it.
Give me tolerance and patience, and strength to persevere.
In the name of Him who loves us.   Amen.

(Tony Tidey Associate CHJM)


A Prayer Practice for when you notice you are not
exercising compassion:
Directing your attention to the person(s) concerned, pray:
May (s)he be filled with your compassion, O Lord; may your Mother’s love enfold them.

A Prayer for compassion by Joyce Rupp
Compassionate God,
your generous presence is always attuned to hurting ones.
Your listening ear is bent toward the cries of the wounded.
Your heart of love fills with tears for the suffering.
Turn my inward eye to see that I am not alone.
I am a part of all of life.
Each one’s joy and sorrow is my joy and sorrow and mine is theirs.
May I draw strength from this inner communion.
May it daily recommit me to be a compassionate presence
for all who struggle with life’s pain.  Amen.

World Peace Prayer
Lead me from Death to Life
from Falsehood to Truth
Lead me from Despair to Hope
from Fear to Trust
Lead me from Hate to Love
from War to Peace
Let Peace fill our Heart
our World, our Universe
Peace   Peace   Peace

(St. Teresa of Calcutta and Satish Kumar (a member of the Jain community), launched this prayer in 1981. It is an adaptation of a passage in the Hindu Upanishads, and has been used by people of all religions in peace meetings throughout the world)

Prayer for Peace
Grant us to look with your eyes of compassion,
O merciful God, at the long travail of mankind:
the wars, the hungry millions,
the countless refugees,
the natural disasters,
the cruel and needless deaths,
men’s inhumanity to one another,
the heartbreak and hopelessness of so many lives.
Hasten the coming of the messianic age
when the nations shall be at peace,
and men shall live free from fear and free from want
and there shall be no more pain or tears,
in the security of your will,
the assurance of your love,
the coming of your Kingdom,
O God of righteousness, O Lord of compassion.

(George Appleton was a former Archbishop of Jerusalem where he worked to promote reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians.  He remained active in the cause of peace and understanding between people of different faiths until his death in 1993)

Prayer for compassion based on Ephesians 4: 31-32
Compassionate God,
take from my heart all bitterness and wrath,
anger, wrangling and slander.
Take from me all malice,
and teach me to be kind and forgive others
knowing that I have been forgiven by Christ.
This I ask in His name.  Amen.

Act of Dedication to Divine Compassion
Love of the Heart of Jesus, inflame my heart.
Charity of the Heart of Jesus, flow into my heart.
Strength of the Heart of Jesus, support my heart.
Mercy of the Heart of Jesus, pardon my heart.
Patience of the Heart of Jesus, grow not weary of my heart.
Kingdom of the Heart of Jesus, be in my heart.
Wisdom of the Heart of Jesus, teach my heart.
Will of the Heart of Jesus, guide my heart.
Zeal of the Heart of Jesus, consume my heart.
Mother of the Heart of Jesus, smile on my poor heart.
Desire of the Heart of Jesus, to you I dedicate my heart.

Sr. Elizabeth Ruth Obbard, Carmelite Solitary (amended)


O dearest Lord, thy Sacred Heart with spear was pierced for me;
O pour thy Spirit in my heart that I may live for thee.  Amen
(Fr. Andrew SDC: NEH 89)