The head of the Roman Catholic Church has called on the head of the Russian Orthodox Church for a joint effort to end the war in Ukraine.
"May the Holy Spirit change our hearts and turn us into peacemakers, in particular for war-torn Ukraine," Pope France wrote in Russian to Patriarch Kirill on the occasion of Easter in the Orthodox Church, which was celebrated on Sunday.
Francis wrote of a "new dawn" that people in Ukraine were seeking and that would put an end to the "darkness of war."
Kirill, who is seen as a staunch ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, has backed the invasion of Ukraine in his sermons.
Speaking to the Argentine newspaper La Nación last week, Francis said that a meeting between the two church leaders planned for Jerusalem in June had been cancelled.
There had previously been speculation that they could meet during a trip by Francis to Lebanon.
The two leaders last spoke by video on March 16.