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Rev. DeForest Soaries Jr. is the Senior Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens in Somerset, New Jersey. His pastoral ministry focuses on spiritual growth, educational excellence, economic empowerment and faith-based community development. He is the author of “dfree™ Breaking Free from Financial Slavery,” which was published in February 2011 by Zondervan. “dfree®: Breaking Free from Financial Slavery” is based on Dr. Soaries’ dfree® strategy, which uses a four-prong approach to teach people how to be debt free. It is his goal for his 7,000-member congregation to be debt free. A dfree® lifestyle means living without debt, deficits and delinquencies. The dfree® strategy, established in 2005, is available to churches, credit unions and colleges and universities across America. dfree® was also the focus of the third installment of CNN’s Black in America documentary “Almighty Debt,” which aired Oct. 21, 2010. The 90-minute cable-news feature highlighted three families at First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens who were facing tough financial times as a result of the recession, from home foreclosure to underemployment and the struggles associated with paying for college.

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