Follow CBSMIAMI.COM: Facebook | Twitter

MIAMI (CBSMIAMI) — The Vatican said on Friday that Pope Francis and the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church will meet in Cuba next week in a major step to heal the 1000-year-old schism that divided Christianity between East and West.

READ MORE: SW Miami-Dade Shooting Leaves 4 Injured, Including 2 Children

Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, announced the meeting with Patriarch Kirill, saying it will take place in Cuba on February 12th.

READ MORE: Report: Miami-Dade School District Misused $6M For Driver’s Ed Programs

Francis is due to travel to Mexico from February 12th to the 18th.

He will stop in Cuba on the way and meet with Kirill at the Havana airport, where they will sign a joint declaration.

MORE NEWS: COVID-19 Testing Sites In South Florida

It will be the first time ever that a pope and a Russian patriarch have met.