Before that time, Ron Dotzler, founder of Abide Ministries said, part of the building was an old horse-and-buggy fire station.
bought it in 1885.
"This building was so massive and with the huge boilers in the basement, Holy Name had no use for it.
It sat vacant for 20 years," Dotzler
Abide acquired the building in 1993, and renovation began.
The building was more rubble than substance.
said part of one area inside is the base of a 150-foot chimney that can be seen in old photos.
said the building had been a gang hangout, so drug paraphernalia, bullets, and graffiti were the legacy left behind.
"Dead bodies were pulled out of the building just before we moved in," Dotzler
Brick walls have been left to keep the nostalgia of the past.
The area where the old pump house was, is where coal was ramped down to the furnaces and boilers.
and volunteers hauled in dirt to cover the boilers, tore out the underground pipes, and laid a concrete floor over it.
"We want to raise up a generation of world changers," Dotzler
family have lived in part of the building all along and minister to anyone who needs their help.
I got a call at midnight to get a gal's boyfriend out of the bar," Dotzler
"I did and he
life to Christ that night.
had just acquired the house next door, so he
let the man move into it, discipled him and now the man is giving back to the ministry and the community.
All that Abide
does is very relational and has racial reconciliation emphasis.
Supplies and furnishings also come exactly when needed.
"God knows what you need, how much you need, and when you need it," Dotzler
The 34th and Fowler location over time went from facilities to help the area, to abandonment, violence and a dying community.
has a map of the area with a black pin, marking 34th and Fowler, surrounded thickly by red pins.
The red pins represent a history of crime in the area.
"The area that is the most dangerous place for any of us to live in is now in the center of God's will," he
This place was part of my heritage, and Dotzler
has now brought families back into these homes to start a new generation's heritage.
"Our dream is that one day there will be no inner-city.
The Christian Church
will be so active and alive in Omaha, people all over the world will be amazed," he