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Local church offering Financial Peace

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March 8, 2008

Putney -- For millions of Americans it's a familiar sound - the swipe of a credit card.  While it's a convenient way to buy now and pay later, for many, it's a downward spiral into financial debt.

"Credit cards. Credit Cards. Credit cards have been the downfall," says Joe Carr.

He is familiar with the debt facing many South Georgians, but he's not a financial advisor. Carr is the Pastor of First Baptist Church Putney in Dougherty County.

"The next thing they know is that bills start coming in and the next thing I know is that I can't pay for all of this stuff I went out and bought. So they don't have any sound financial principles to go by," says Carr.

With economic uncertainty facing an increasing number of households and consumer debt rising, Carr decided the issues on Wall Street were much closer to Church Street, so he began offering a program called Financial Peace University created by Christian radio host Dave Ramsey.

"You don't get into debt overnight. You don't get out overnight. You learn how to apply sound financial principles, and what you learn is 20% is knowledge. 80% is behavior," says Carr who leads discussion during the two-hour course which meets on a weekly basis.

Ed Coxwell is one of 25 participants to take part in the 13 week Biblically-based accountability class offered at First Baptist Putney.

He said, "It's a program that helps you to pay your way out of debt. It does not, in anyway, encourage you to not pay anything. It's a way that's help you to prioritize your debt so that you can pay it off in a faster period of time."

Each participant receives a membership kit with booklets and DVD's - but perhaps the most helpful tool is knowing they're not alone.

Carr says, "It's kind of like having group accountability. Nobody's embarrassed. Nobody is put on the spot. No body is forced to answer. It's that group setting where an intimacy develops that they realize, I'm not the only one going through this struggle."

The cost of the course, which includes the membership kit,  is only $100.00. Carr tells us the course is not just tips on how to get out debt, but also lessons on retirement, insurance, understanding IRA's, and planning for college.

The next course starts on March 18th and will be held at First Baptist Church Putney on Antioch Road. For information on how you can join you can call 229-436-5101.

For more on Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University, click on the link below.

http://www.daveramsey.com/fpu/home/

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