Marion Barry says he used drugs and alcohol to mask his low self-esteem and ease the pain that lingered from his impoverished childhood.

"I was born black and poor - the son of a sharecropper," the former Washington mayor told a Riviera Beach, Fla., church congregation. "I tried to drown my pain, hurt and resentment in alcohol and then cocaine, but I found my way out in God."Barry returned Sunday to the New Macedonia Baptist Church, where he attended a service while undergoing drug treatment in West Palm Beach last year.

He said his trip was to visit friends at the treatment center, thank the church and warn against drug use.