Don't manipulate the young Pope warns in Thailand

Help discover local values, don't impose single model

(ANSA) - Bangkok, November 22 - The young should not be "manipulated", Pope Francis told an interreligious meeting in Bangkok on Friday.
    Instead, the pope called on those present to teach young people about the values and culture of their people.
    "With the growing tendency to discredit local values and cultures," he said, "for the imposition of a single model, we are seeing a tendency to 'homogenise' young people, to dissolve the differences inherent in their place of origin, to transform them into manipulable subjects, produced on a production line." The pope also called for an end to slavery, ranging from drugs to human trafficking.
    He said the rights and freedoms of conscience and faith should be defended.
    The pope then went on to a Mass in Bangkok, the final event in his trip to Thailand before he leaves for Japan.
    Some 10,000 people turned out for the concluding Mass.
    In his homily, the pope returned to the theme of youth, telling young people that they should not fall for "rigged proposals that over time leave a void".
    At the festival of social doctrine, Francis said there was no need for "strongmen" today.