“Once you choose hope, anything is possible.” - Christopher Reeve
You have probably driven by Dwelling Place Ministries hundreds of times as you’ve made your way through Dublin.
And perhaps you haven’t given much thought about what goes on inside the large, nondescript building located on North Patrick Street.
But step inside and what you will discover is hope.
Hope for a new life. Hope for a new beginning. Hope for another chance.
All that hope was inspired by Dublin resident Deneen Tiemann, a woman with a heart of servitude and determination to help people in need.
“I have a degree in interior design and many years ago I began teaching women how to improve their homes - design on a dime,” Tiemann said. “I wanted to give women a sense of place and belonging.”
That endeavor led Tiemann to recognize a greater need in the area and inspired her to open Dwelling Place Ministries 12 years ago.
Today, under the umbrella of Dwelling Place Ministries, there is a thrift store that sells clothing, housewares, toys, books and Christmas decorations.
There is also the Christian Women’s Job Corps, a multi-layered part of the ministry that provides life-skills training for women.
“This is for women who have gone through a struggle of some sort,” Tiemann said. “They may be divorced or have been widowed. They may be a woman who is on probation or struggling with drug or alcohol addiction.”
Women taking part in CWJC go through two semesters of classes for a total of 20 weeks.
The free classes offered for women 18 and older are held from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays and include lunch and child care.
“And if they need transportation, we will provide that too,” Tiemann said.
Participants are assigned a mentor called “sisters of the heart” who helps them along their journey.
The classes teach job and computer skills and financial management, which are taught by Dublin resident Dana Herod.
There are sewing and cooking classes taught by Erath County extension agent Donna White and Mary Howard.
There is even a closet where women can get dress clothes for work.
Amanda Jenkins is the new volunteer coordinator and community liaison for Dwelling Place Ministries.
Jenkins is a former reporter for the Empire-Tribune and was familiar with the ministry when she saw a Facebook post about the new position.
“My life changed when I lost my brother (Terry Jenkins) last year,” she said. “He did so many good things in his life, so I decided I needed to do more good things. I asked myself what I was doing to help others.”
Jenkins, a single mother raising two daughters, said she could relate to many of the struggles their clients are experiencing.
“I’m a perfect fit for this because I have been through a lot of (what they’re going through),” Jenkins said.
One of those former clients, Stephanie Womack, says CWJC not only changed her life, but probably saved it.
Womack, 35, was born and raised in Dublin and became a drug addict, doing everything from marijuana to methamphetamine.
“Anything I could get my hands on,” she said.
Eventually, she got into legal trouble and landed in jail where she says she finally got sober and “found Jesus.”
“When I got out of jail I was sober and scared. I knew I needed to make a change in my life and I needed help doing it,” Womack said. “Something inside me kept pushing me to get involved with CWJC.”
It’s a decision she will never regret making.
“I went into (CWJC) wholeheartedly,” she said. “I was going to put just as much effort into it as I did my drug habit.”
Womack completed the program in 2015 and has been sober for two years. She has a daughter and steady job cleaning houses.
“The women there taught me so much about Jesus and applying that to my life,” Womack said. “I am still involved and now the Lord has put it on my heart to minister.”
For more information about Dwelling Place Ministries, call 254-445-2228.