Born in Reading, PA, she is a graduate of Reading High School and Bucknell University, where she earned a BS in biology. She also received a certificate in medical technology from George E. Geisinger Memorial Hospital, Danville, PA, and worked at Reading Hospital, West Reading, PA, for nine years before entering religious life.
Sister Jean entered Maryknoll Sisters on September 2, 1956, receiving the religious name Sister Rose Benedict. Her first assignment was working at Queen of the World Hospital, Kansas City, MO, one of the first multiracial hospitals in the United States, where she served from 1960-1966.
Sister Jean then received her first foreign assignment, and was sent to the Philippines. There she worked as a laboratory technologist at St. Paul’s Hospital in Manila, then at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Manapla.
From 1972-1981 she was a member of the Maryknoll Sisters USA Eastern Region, followed by ministry in Manoa, HI, at the Spiritual Life Center, and Liturgy Director at St. Pius X Church in Honolulu until 1992, giving her opportunity to exercise another of her deep interests, liturgical and choral music.
She also worked at the Maryknoll Sisters Center from 1992-1997. Now retired, she lives at the Maryknoll Sisters Center, where she is a member of its Eden Community.