Shirley Carpenter was born in Berea, Ohio. Raised in a Christian home, she accepted Jesus as her Savior as a young child. But, until 1969, she knew Him best as the God of her father and mother. At that time, with greater understanding and revelation of who Jesus was, she made Him Lord of her life. About a year later Jesus baptized her with the Holy Spirit. Accompanying her baptism was an insatiable hunger for the word of God. As a result she began teaching Sunday School and home Bible studies.
In spring of 1974 Shirley answered the call of God for full-time ministry. Later that fall the Lord laid it upon her heart to start an interdenominational retreat organization. As the number of retreats increased the demand for ministry increased also, and Shirley began sharing at churches, seminars, Women's Aglow meetings and various fellowships. Carpenter Ministries was then formed to take in the variety of audiences.
Shirley's hunger for greater understanding and drive for accuracy in interpreting the Word led her to the Midrasha, the college of Jewish studies in Southfield, Michigan. There she studied for almost three years learning from Israeli teachers whose native tongue was Hebrew. Much more than becoming familiar with the language, she learned about their culture and their unique way of thinking which has been a real asset in her teaching.
In November of 1980 God revealed to Dr. Iverna Tompkins the call on Shirley's life and she was ordained. Her ordination is currently under ITM, Iverna Tompkins Ministries in Scottsdale, Arizona.
In August of 1988 Shirley and her husband Greg moved to Phoenix, Arizona where Shirley taught in the monthly TLC weeks at Scottsdale Christian Training Center (SCTC). TLC, or Taking Leaders to Christ, which was headed by Dr. Iverna Tompkins.
God once again broadened Shirley's ministry as He opened new doors internationally. Adding to her active ministry in Canada, the opportunity to teach and preach in Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Norway, and Czechoslovakia, Japan, Vietnam and Indonesia were realized, with new countries opening each year.
In recent years, in addition to bringing the word of the Lord to various churches and gatherings, Shirley has enjoyed training and instructing teachers and preachers in creative methods of study and effective teaching techniques. Her oriental approach to Scripture has broadened doctors of theology as well as the blue collar workman. Her love and enthusiasm for the word stimulate others to dig for deeper truths on both layman and college levels alike. This also led to the birth of Gold Diggers, an intensive Bible research seminar. Since its inception in 1994, Gold Diggers has been held in several states as well as spreading to other nations.
Shirley is a wife having been married for over 35 years. She is a mother of two grown children who are married and she also enjoys responding to the title of "grandma" with seven grandchildren. Shirley's husband, Greg, has been an integral part of her ministry knowing that God has called them together. Although Greg has not been called to public ministry, his prayer support and beautiful gift of helps has kept the home front closely knit. Greg's attitude towards Shirley's active involvement in ministry is easily summed up in his statement, "The greatest gift I can give to God and the Church is my wife."
Shirley has recorded several albums and Carpenter Ministries has published several of her books.
Shirley and her husband are active members of The Journey, pastored by Dan Beyer, where Shirley is embraced as an outreach of the church. They are also involved in many of the church activities and weekly Bible Study. Shirley is also an active member of the Worship Team and Greg Carpenter serves the church as an Elder.