The CPE Program at CHRISTUS SPOHN Hospital Corpus Christi has a long history. After the hiring of the first Director of Pastoral Care in 1971, a CPE program was established and accredited in 1973. Under the leadership of Rev. Medicus Rentz, the CPE program quickly grew and offered many local clergy and laypersons the opportunity to deepen their pastoral care skills. In 2003, after almost 30 years, Rev. Rentz retired and a number of educators supported the continuation of the program.
Between 1998-2004 about 40 students participated in numerous units of CPE. In 2004 the program went into a phase of restructuring which culminated in hiring a consultant supervisor who became the Director of Spiritual Care in 2005, Rev. Mike Saxton. Under his leadership, the CPE program began to flourish.
When the demand for CPE continued to grow a contract supervisor, Rev. Michael Doane was hired to conduct several units of Extended CPE. In March of 2008, Rev. Miriam Berger joined the department as the manager of CPE. In 2007 and 2008, 23 students were supervised by these three supervisors in 6 units of CPE.
In September of 2008, the CPE Residency was re-established with 5 CPE Residents. The CPE center also was granted accreditation by the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE, Inc.) to conduct Supervisory Education for CPE in 2008. In 2009 Rev. Michael Doane became the Executive Director for Spiritual and Palliative Care for the CHRISTUS SPOHN Health System. In 2010 the CHRISTUS SPOHN CPE Center underwent its 10-year reaccreditation process with the national accrediting body, ACPE, Inc., and was found “fully compliant" with all 2010 ACPE standards. Rev. Saxton and Rev. Doane have since moved on having significantly shaped the quality and direction of the CPE program. In the Spring of 2015, the CPE program underwent its 5-year-reaccreditation successfully and was once again found fully compliant. In 2017, the center underwent a system accreditation with ACPE and was granted system accreditation up to 2027.
In November 2015, Rev. Mirjam Berger moved and in December 2015, Rev. Aloysius A. Ezenwata, who had earlier on in October become the Regional Director for Spiritual Care and Clinical Pastoral Education assumed responsibility at CHRISTUS SPOHN Hospital, Corpus Christi. Concurrently, he conducted the Winter and Spring CPE Units for the CPE residents. In May 2016, Rev. Dr. Thewodros Asfaw was hired as the Manager of Clinical Pastoral Education. After his departure and followed by Rev. Tom Carter who had a brief stay, Rev. Dr. Yoke Lye Kwong was hired as the Manager of Clinical Pastoral Education on September 3, 2020.