SOMERSET, N.J. — One Baptist minister is determined to cleanse his congregation of credit card debt with fire.
A bucket full of credit card offers went up in flames after the Sunday services at the First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens after Rev. DeForest B. Soaries Jr. set them ablaze, according to MyCentralJersey.com.
The minister was provoked after members of his congregation said they were receiving a large number of offers in the mail, including one who was sent 38 over four weeks.
“We need to do something against consumer debt,” Soaries, who has received dozens of credit card offers as well, told MyCentralJersy.com. “We are burning up these offers as a show of enthusiasm against these practices — to minimize the use of credit cards, to moderate the debt. In the ’60s it was segregation, and in 2012 it is this fight where the rich get richer and the poor stay poor. We are saying we will no longer contribute to this.”
Soaries, author of the book “dfree: Breaking Free from Financial Slavery,” told MyCentralJersey.com that people must battle against lenders who prey on vulnerable borrowers.
“They hire external marketing companies who are not at all discriminatory to whom they send applications. They have people who study us to see how we feel and think,” Soaries told MyCentralJersey. “To make us feel important. There is nothing that says you will sign up for this and you will be a slave. They just make it look so good.”