CPE was introduced into New Zealand through Diana Mary Goss, who offered the first Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) course in New Zealand at Wellington Hospital in 1969 after completing supervisory training in the United States of America. She then offered CPE courses at Porirua Hospital, Wellington, for the next 18 years and was part of the training of a number of our present CPE supervisors.
Diana went to school in Wellington and gained a Masters Degree in English Literature at Victoria University. She served as a parish assistant at Saint Peters-in-the-City, Wellington from 1951 until she went to New York and gained a Bachelor of Divinity at Union Seminary.
Diana is remembered as a woman of vision who had deep compassion for a wide range of people. She valued realness and abhorred game-playing. It speaks volumes to remember that she refused ordination, knowing that it would curb her freedom to exercise her ministry. Nonetheless, she was a valued resource of wisdom across many Christian denominations, especially in the selection of candidates for ordination training.
Diana was respected for her ongoing battle with what she called her “neurological disability” which was a form of multiple sclerosis. Those close to her are grateful to have survived her driving!
Diana is today remembered in the Australasian CPE scene through a special award, fittingly named the Diana Goss award. Those who suggested her name for this award were very confident that the Professional Paper Award established in her name would please her, as it seeks to foster creative thinking in CPE which was the passion and focus of her life’s work.