BROOKLYN - Overspending threatens to cripple the economic well-being of black New Yorkers, according to an annual report by the Brooklyn Christian Center.

Among the biggest problems facing black New Yorkers is what the report calls "houselessness? -- too much renting and not enough owning.

The report also cites overspending, too much reliance on government benefits that can change and a lack of education about finance.

In response to the report, Rev. Dennis Dillon and Rev. Marlene Thomas, of the Brooklyn Christian Center, say they are expanding the place of religion in people's lives.

As part of its effort to make a dent in the problem, the center is starting a new advertising campaign in early April. The message is ?pay your mortgage first,? encouraging black New Yorkers to make that monthly bill their number one priority.