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What to do if you're in debt.

1. Find resources on the Internet: Beware of unscrupulous websites or e-mails promising quick fixes to your money problems. But that doesn't mean that there isn't lots of good information on the Web.

Get-out-of-debt guru Dave Ramsey offers a free "Financial Reality Check" on his website (www.daveramsey.com) as well as a free audio CD. You can also order his book The Total Money Makeover (Nelson, 2003).

Crown Financial Ministries (www.crown.org) also provides a wealth of resources on its site, including assistance finding a budget coach, articles on everything from affordable family vacations to the high cost of clutter, and access to their radio broadcasts.

2. Hit your library or bookstore: Of the many books offering financial assistance, several specifically target people of faith. Philip Lenahan has written The Catholic Answers Guide to Family Finances (Catholic Answers, 2000).

Devotions for Debtors (Galilee Trade, 2004) by Kristen Johnson Ingram features 120 meditations with scripture passages to help people live within their means.

Tom Beaudoin's Consuming Faith (Sheed & Ward, 2004) helps Catholics put their shopping habits in line with their social justice values.

3. Seek help from o financial counselor: Many Catholic Charities offices offer financial counseling. To find your local office, visit www.catholiccharitiesusa.org.

4. Talk to a priest, therapist, or spiritual director: Talking to a counselor or spiritual director might help you uncover the deeper reason you use retail therapy to solve your problems. They'll help you fill the spiritual holes that buying more stuff never can.
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Author:Schlumpf, Heidi
Publication:U.S. Catholic
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2005
Words:251
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