The writer information in the July Missions Mosaic simply says, “Shirley Cox, Mission Service Corps missionary, writes from her home in Mt. Vernon, Kentucky.” What an understatement! After working with Shirley both as a writer and as a member of the Kentucky WMU Executive Board (2006-09), I know Shirley as one who is making a difference in missions by telling missions stories, prayer, and personal ministry.
An early opportunity for Shirley’s writing to have an impact on missions came when she wrote about Bessie McPeak, better known as “the diaper lady.” That feature story in Missions Mosaic brought volunteers and all kinds of help for Bessie’s ministry in Jenkins, Kentucky. Since then, Shirley’s articles have appears in places like the North American Mission Board On Mission magazine, SBC Life, Western Recorder, and Altitude (Contemporary Mountain Living magazine). Four of Shirley’s Missions Mosaic articles have been featured on the magazine cover. She has also written missionary focus feature articles and book reviews for Mosaaic, website articles for Adults on Missions and Women on Mission, as well as articles for Appalachian Regional Ministry and MSC Newsletters.
Shirley’s recent articles in Missions Mosaic include ”Merciful Healing” in the June issue and “Disaster Relief Volunteers” in the July issue. The ministry in Haiti of Baptist Nursing Fellowship nurses is the subject of the June article. The work of Jim Richards and volunteers from the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention is featured in the July article. The stories are inspiring and challenge readers to get involved in ministry.
Shirley has also been the writer of our Kentucky state missions Master Article for the past several years. Each year Shirley interviews people whose stories challenge us to pray, give, and go. Her writing helps us to tell the story of Kentucky missions in a print articles that complement the videos produced by Larry Brannin, award winning Media Associate for the Kentucky Baptist Convention.
Perhaps you remember some of Shirley’s stories for state missions. “Follow His Lead (2005), “Be Utterly Amazed” (2006), “Celebrate God’s Love (2008), “It’s Harvest Time (2009), and “Why?” (2010). They are still good reading about Kentucky missions! Likewise, the videos are still good to use in your church!
Shirley’s “Chain Reaction” article is a key part of the 2011 state missions booklet which will be sent to WMU directors and pastors in July. In the meantime, read Shirley’s articles in Missions Mosaic and pray about your response to the missions needs all around us. God has used Shirley Cox to start many a missions chain reaction. Read, respond, and be a part of the continuing missions chain reaction in Kentucky and beyond!