The personal secretary of former Pope Benedict XVI has dismissed media reports that the pontiff's resignation was prompted by a belief that God had told him to.
Catholic news agency Zenit reported earlier this month that the Pope Emeritus had a "mystical experience" in which God "told me" to step down.
The report claimed the experience led to him having an "absolute desire" to dedicate his life exclusively to prayer and a solitary relationship with God.
The source for the story was anonymous.
However, Benedict's personal secretary, Archbishop Georg Gaenswein told the Italian TV channel Canale 5 that the report from Zenit was "made up from alpha to omega".
"There is nothing true in that story," he said.