Norma graduated from Northwestern Schools (later changed to Northwestern College) in Minneapolis, where she met her future husband, Dr. Gordon L. Shipp. She worked with her husband as he pastored First Baptist Church, Farmington, Iowa; First Baptist Church, Eldora, Iowa; Belden Avenue Baptist Church, Chicago; and South Baptist Church, Flint, Michigan.
In 1980 the Shipps moved to Ankeny, Iowa, where Gordon assumed the presidency of Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary. Norma served as his secretary until her husband’s death in March 1987 and then continued in that office until her retirement in May 1997. Upon retirement from the college, she worked part-time as a secretary at Saylorville Church in Des Moines until April 2005.
In addition, she taught secretarial classes at FBBC; was president of the Iowa Association of Regular Baptist Churches ladies’ group in 1963 and 1984; was a workshop speaker at the GARBC conferences in 1972 and 1992; spoke at women’s retreats in Illinois, Texas, Colorado, New York, and Iowa; and spoke in classes each year at FBBC. In 1988 Faith Baptist Bible College awarded Norma the title of an honorary alumnus or her significant contributions to the institution.
She is survived by her three children, Deb Battey, Steve, and Cyndi Lister; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
Viewing will be held at Ankeny Funeral Home on Jan. 6, 4:00–7:00. A memorial service will be held Jan. 7, 11:00 a.m., at Saylorville Church, 6429 NW Sixth Dr., Des Moines, where she was a member. Burial will be in Ankeny Memorial Gardens prior to the memorial service.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary.