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Pope Francis warns young Mexicans not to be lured into drug trade

MORELIA, Mexico -- Pope Francis continued his five-day trip to Mexico Tuesday, where he received a rock star's welcome as he traveled to some of the country's most dangerous places.

The Holy Father brought a message of hope to young people and warned them to be careful of being lured into the drug trade. He also had some strong words for the clergy.

Clergy did the conga and nuns waved pompoms at a Mass-turned-mosh-pit.

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Youths cheer during a meeting with Pope Francis at the Jose Maria Morelos y Pavon stadium in Morelia, Mexico, February 16, 2016.
REUTERS

In his homily in Morelia, a hotbed of drug violence, the pope urged young priests to fight injustice.

Later at a stadium packed with 45,000 young people, the pope said he knows it's hard for young people to feel valued when they've lost so many loved ones to drug violence.

Reminiscent of a rock concert, one person shouted, "We love you, Pope Francis!"

But not everyone is happy that the pope is here, with some calling his visit a diversion.

"This would be a distraction for the real political problems and social problems," Nydia de la Llera told CBS News.

She said the pope's words are not enough -- Action is needed to right wrongs in the church.

"He's just doing what is political correct because he is not punishing all the child abusers," she said. "Everything is words. Nothing happens in the reality."

The hashtag #YoNoQuieroQueVengaElPapa ("I don't want the Pope to come") has appeared on Twitter. One man said the estimated $10 million spent for his visit should go to education, health, and employment.

But millions of others disagree, and have embraced the pope at every turn. Crowds lined the streets for miles in Morelia ahead of the pope's Mass.

In an area known as an epicenter of the Mexican drug crisis, the Pope urged young priests to fight injustices, like the rampant killings and kidnappings that plague Mexico.

More than 25,000 people have vanished in Mexico during the last 10 years. Some of the highest profile are the 43 students who disappeared in 2014.

Protesters have been demonstrating in Mexico City for more than a year, demanding justice for the students, who have not been seen since a confrontation with police.

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Relatives of missing women and peasants protest near the airport of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico on the eve of the arrival of Pope Francis, on February 16, 2016.
JULIO CESAR AGUILAR FUENTES/AFP/Getty Images

"This the most popular case but not the only one," activist Luis Rosales said. "We're here to tell people this can't happen again."

Rosales said the pope stands by Mexico's corrupt government, and will not bring about real change.

"Things won't get better because of praying" he said. "Things must be stopped by us, by the people."

Missing signs are plastered in the border city of Juarez, where the pope visits Wednesday. It was once called the murder capitol of the world, but the city is undergoing a renaissance and violence is down 40 percent.

Parents of the missing students will attend the pope's Mass in Ciudad Juarez, across from El Paso, Texas. Up to 200,000 people are expected to cross the border to attend.