Pope Francis has explicitly condemned Russia's invasion of Ukraine and made countless appeals to end the war. Since the pope has previously engaged in a number of prisoner swaps and negotiations, his latest attempt to reconcile Russia and Ukraine is significant. It could bring positive results in ending an absurd and cruel war.
The pope has repeatedly offered to mediate a peace process throughout the conflict to no avail. So what's different to make us believe his efforts would succeed this time? Moreover, when he describes the war as Russian expansionism and imperialism and he holds the Ukrainian flag, it's clear which side of the conflict he sides with.
There is a 50% chance the Catholic Church will elect a new pope by April 2025, according to the Metaculus prediction community.