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Secretary to Benedict XVI says ‘mystical experience’ story is false

Catholic World News - August 26, 2013

Archbishop Georg Ganswein has flatly denied a widely circulated report that Pope Benedict XVI resigned after a mystical experience that convinced him God wanted him to step down.

The report, originally circulated by the Zenit news agency, quoted an unnamed source as saying that the Pope-emeritus had explained his resignation during a recent private meeting. The source quoted the retired Pope as saying that he resigned because “God wanted me to.”

Archbishop Ganswein told an Italian television audience that the entire story was baseless. “It was invented from alpha to omega,” he said.

Pope-emeritus Benedict does receive some visitors at his Vatican residence. But since his resignation took effect he has been careful not to make any public statements.

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  • Posted by: mario.f.leblanc5598 - Aug. 26, 2013 2:09 PM ET USA

    I trust this will put to rest some crazy rumors, including 'maybe he was told to resign, but that did not come from God'. May his prayers bring true blessings to the Church and to pope Francis in particular.

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