If you are compassionate, you feel other people's pain and struggles as though they were your own. Compassionate people are often moved to work to end the suffering of others, perhaps by feeding the hungry or educating the poor.
Compassionate comes from the Old French noun compassion, which means "sympathy, pity." The adjective, pronounced "cuhm-PASH-uh-nuht," means "sympathetic," like a compassionate friend who shares in your joys and sadnesses, wanting the best for you. As a verb, compassionate, here pronounced "cuhm-PASH-uh-nate," means "pity," as in your ability to compassionate with stray dogs and cats.