Francis Bennett was a Roman Catholic, Trappist monastic for a number of years. She lived in two monasteries of the Trappist Order in the US and was also a member of an urban, contemplative monastic community originally founded in Paris, France in 1975. She has lived in France at several monasteries, including Saint Gervais et Protais in Paris, at Mont Saint Michel along the coast of the English Channel and in Canada at a small monastic community in Montreal Quebec. She received a five-and-a-half-year monastic/spiritual formation with the Trappists before she made her vows as a monk at Gethsemani Abbey in 1982. She graduated from the Pontifical College Josephinum with a BA in Philosophy and completed a two-year residency in Clinical Pastoral Education with Ohio Health Hospital System in Columbus, Ohio. She has worked in ministry in the area of pastoral Care in the hospice movement, as a hospital chaplain and in pastoral care of the sick and dying in parish settings. Her teaching is a blend of Christian mysticism and Buddhist principles and teachings she learned from the master teachers she has worked with over the past several decades.
In the Summer of 2016 Adya asked Francis to be part of his teaching lineage.
Francis happens to be transgender and transitioned during 2016 and 2017. She is hoping to have a new spiritual outreach toward the LGBTQ communities.