Fr. Cliff Ermatinger

Fr. Cliff Ermatinger is an author, spiritual director and retreat master.  He was ordained in Rome and has lived, studied and worked all over the world. He is an expert on the subject of spiritual warfare.  His graduate degrees are from Rome and Salamanca and his many books have been published by Padre Pio Press.


Remote Preparation for Mental Prayer: Forgiveness Received and Extended

A young associate pastor once told me that when he would go to adoration or attempt mental prayer he would often see the angry face of his pastor in his mind. I suggested he forgive his pastor for whatever offenses he had committed and, obstacle removed, his prayer would be freed up to make progress.…


The Vigilant Heart: Remote Preparation for Mental Prayer

We have all had the experience of being in conversation with someone who is not attentive, looks over our shoulder, glances at his watch, scrolls up and down on his phone, etc. while we speak. Every one of us also knows what it means to speak with someone who is truly listening and grasps even…


Spiritual Retreats Need Piety and Modesty

A charitable young man, a former parishioner of mine, heard that I was stuck in quarantine. He texted me, indicating that he had just finished a weekend retreat, was in the neighborhood, and could drop off some victuals for his reclusive ex-pastor. Not only was I moved by his kindness, I wanted to know more…


Advent – Time for “Holiday Parties” or Little Lent?

“But except you do penance, you shall all likewise perish.” —Luke 13:5 My childhood hero was Bishop Ignatius Kung. We were told of his heroic suffering as a prisoner. The Chinese Communists (the same ones who recently gifted us with a man-made virus), permitted him to leave his solitary confinement of thirty years if he…


How to Advance in Holiness: Lectio Divina

How do we advance in holiness? This not an impractical question. The Church teaches us that we have three necessary means of salvation and, those same, according to degree, attain holiness: sacramental grace, prayer, and virtue. All three pistons have to be running in unison for the motor of the spiritual organism to advance. By…


Battle Ready: No Mental Prayer, No Holiness

“Nonne militia est vita hominis super terram, et sicut dies mercennarii dies eius?” —Job 7:1, Vulgate The book of Job asks, “Is not the life of man on earth warfare, and are not his days like that of a hireling?”  He seems to think that the answer is obvious, since the question is less a…