Boundless Compassion

Creating a Way of Life
Author: Joyce Rupp

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Format: Paperback

Publication date: March 2, 2018

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Named one of the Top 50 Spirituality Books of 2018 by Spirituality & Practice.Winner of a 2019 Catholic Press Association Award: Spirituality/Soft Cover Books (First Place) and a 2019 Association of Catholic Publishers Award: Spirituality Books (Second Place)

“Living compassionately is rarely convenient and often downright challenging,” writes Joyce Rupp, bestselling and award-winning author and retreat leader. The definitive Christian guide to compassion, Boundless Compassion is the culmination of Rupp's research and work as codirector of the Servite Center of Compassionate Presence. Through this six-week personal transformation process for developing and deepening compassion, Rupp nudges, encourages, and inspires you to grow in the kind of love that motivated Jesus’ life and mission for his disciples.

With master teacher Joyce Rupp, you will learn to develop compassion as never before. You will discover compassion from science, medicine, theology, spirituality, sociology, and psychology. You will be encouraged to explore personal and professional expressions of compassion, and to re-energize your ability to offer loving kindness to those around you.

Rupp has felt the call to walk with others in their suffering since she was a young member of the Servants of Mary, whose charism is compassion. She eventually cofounded the Boundless Compassion program with Sr. Margaret Stratman, O.S.M.

Based on the format and theme of Rupp’s bestselling books like Open the Door and her popular workshops conducted by the Center of Compassionate Presence, Boundless Compassion has the power to transform your life, giving you wisdom, confidence, understanding, and inspiration to be a more caring presence. It will help you build on relational skills, learn self-care, gain wisdom for incorporating loss and suffering into your active life, and find ways to show compassion at work.

By the book's end, you will feel prepared to live with a renewed commitment to a compassionate presence for yourself and those who are in the midst of pain, struggle, and transition.

Product Details

Pages: 224

Trim size: 6 x 9 inches

ISBN: 9781932057140

Imprint: Sorin Books

Joyce Rupp discusses the four most essential seeds of compassion from her book, Boundless Compassion.


A question for reflection follows each day's content. These questions will allow you to spend time with the themes of the book and further your personal transformation.


A brief prayer follows each reflection. Forty additional prayers, blessings, and meditations can be found in the companion book, Prayers for Boundless Compassion.


A scripture verse ends each day and to serve as a reminder to animate a particular aspect of compassion throughout the day.

Explore Personal and Professional Compassion

Compassion is a way of life—an inner posture of how to be with suffering, both our own and others, and a desire to move that attitude into action. Compassion involves an 'inside-out' movement. A radical change unfolds in us when compassion becomes a way of life, a transformation as far-reaching as an acorn growing into a tree, an egg producing a chicken, or a caterpillar metamorphosing into a butterfly.

Grow in the Kind of Love that Motivated Jesus' Life

This book is not about easy answers; nor does it suggest that we can 'fix' the world's suffering or eliminate it entirely from those closest to us. Rather, Boundless Compassion extends an invitation to grow in the kind of love that motivated Jesus to be a compassionate presence.

For those wishing to use this book in a more in-depth and integrated way, there are guides for Individual Study, Group Study, and Circles of Compassion (perfect for use after a retreat or conference).

Prayers of Boundless Compassion

This companion book offers forty original prayers, blessings, and meditations by Rupp that will help us practice themes of compassion: as a way of life, welcoming ourselves, the river of suffering, from hostility to hospitality, a thousand unbreakable links, and compassionate presence.

To be used alone or as a helpful companion to Rupp's Boundless Compassion book and program, this collection of prayers will inspire anyone to change the world.

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  • “Her signature generative work.”


    “I believe that Boundless Compassion will turn out to be Joyce Rupp's signature generative work.  We learn how with true compassion realism meets hope; we are invited to sit with other wisdom figures whose words she includes in her text; and we are given the rare opportunity to personally experience a retreat—which this book really is—with one of today’s leading spiritual midwives. Boundless Compassion calls us to be compassionate to others and to ourselves in the richest way possible, with Jesus Christ as our ultimate model. Why not respond to this call by slowly enjoying the companionship of this extraordinary book? It may turn out to be the most significant prayer experience you have this year or for years to come.”

    Robert J. Wicks
    Author of Riding the Dragon

  • “Beautifully written.”


    “Joyce Rupp’s moving and powerful work speaks of compassion as 'full immersion in the condition of being human.' Then she shows the way. Her exploration of how the heart might open to ourselves, to one another, to all living beings, and to the earth becomes a master class in love.”

    Paula D’Arcy
    Author of Winter of the Heart

  • “I felt my heart relax into sweetness.”


    “Joyce Rupp shares her experience of the incremental deepening of compassion amid an encouraging and inspiring assembly of scholars and sages of various traditions. As I read, I felt my heart relax into sweetness.”

    Sylvia Boorstein
    Author of It's Easier Than You Think

  • “Transformative.”


    “Joyce Rupp presents us with a practical, no-nonsense invitation and challenge to change ourselves and our world by becoming, and living out, compassion. This book will both inspire us and deepen us into God.”

    Edwina Gateley
    Poet, author, and speaker

  • “A masterwork.”

    “A masterwork brimming over with insights, practices, exercises, and illustrative materials on compassion as a spiritual way of life.”

    Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
    Spirituality & Practice

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Additional Resources

Compassion as a Way of Life Video

Joyce Rupp explains how readers can gain insight and take action through compassion.

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Spirituality and Practice Book Review
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Englewood Review of Books Review
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