She has served as a pastor in communities in Texas, California and New Mexico. She has served as a district superintendent in the West Texas and New Mexico area as well as in the greater Portland, Oregon area. She was the founding pastor of the ecumenical ministry, the South Albuquerque Cooperative Ministry, in Albuquerque, New Mexico which was recognized by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. as its outstanding ecumenical project in 1998. She has also directed the Mexican American Program, the Spanish language Course of Study School, and the Hispanic Studies Program of Perkins School of Theology. She was elected to the Episcopacy of The UMC in 2004 and served as bishop of the Phoenix Area, the Desert Southwest Conference, from 2004 to 2012. In 2012 she was assigned to the Los Angeles Area, the California-Pacific Conference.
As a young person she was an active youth leader in the Rio Grande Conference and later served on the Rio Grande Conference’s Council on Ministry, Council on Finance and Administration, Committee on Equitable Compensation, Committee on Research and Development, Board of Global Ministries and the Board of Ordained Ministry. Youth ministry introduced her to service in the connectional church serving first on the Jurisdictional Youth Council of the South Central Jurisdiction, and then going on to serve on the former Board of Education, the General Boards of Global Ministry and Church and Society, the Board of the Publishing House, the General Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns, and the General Commission on Religion and Race. She has also served on the National Cooperative Parish Ministry Committee, the Committee of the International Clergywomen’s Consultation, the Hispanic Clergywomen’s Consultation and the Committee of the National Plan for Hispanic/Latino Ministry.
She has participated in different capacities at the General Conference of The United Methodist Church at every General Conference from 1976 to the present with the exception of the 1988 General Conference when the death of her father precluded her from attending. In 1996 and 2004, she was the lead delegate from her annual conference to the General Conference.
In service to the General Conference of The UMC she has served on the Our Theological Task Committee, the Connectional Process Team, the Study Committee on the Relationship of The UMC and the Autonomous Affiliated Methodist Churches of Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Standing Committee on Central Conference Matters. While living and serving in the South Central Jurisdiction she served on the Jurisdictional Committee for Korean Ministry and the Committee on Episcopacy. In the Western Jurisdiction, she presently has supervisory responsibility for the Western Jurisdiction’s Korean Mission work. In relationship to this Korean Mission work, she serves on the Committee of the Korean National Plan of The United Methodist Church. She continues to help lead the the Interagency Task Force on Immigration for The UMC, and is a lead spokesperson on matters of immigration reform for the Council of Bishops. In 2013, she was one among 14 religious leaders who were invited to the White House by President Barack Obama to consult with him about immigration reform.
She has served as an active member of the Council of Bishops with service on several committees and task forces including the Executive Committee of the Council. She presently represents the Council on the Commission on the General Conference. She has also served as Secretary and President of the Western Jurisdiction College of Bishops. Bishop Carcaño has had the opportunity to preach, teach, and speak at sessions of annual conferences, schools of Christian Mission, pastors’ schools, youth and student events, at schools of theology and at a variety of United Methodist and ecumenical church consultations, and justice and human rights events all over the U.S., Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Cuba, Mexico, Zimbabwe, and Switzerland.
Out of a commitment to ecumenical and interfaith work she has served as President of the New Mexico Conference of Churches which awarded her its Turquoise Award for exemplary ecumenical leadership, and as the President of the Arizona Ecumenical Council. She presently serves as an active member of the Los Angeles Council of Religious Leaders. She has worked with the Industrial Areas Foundations projects in the Rio Grande Valley, El Paso, and Dallas, Texas, as well as in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Portland, Oregon, and most recently with the IAF projects in Arizona and Southern Nevada. She serves on the Southwest Industrial Education Fund Board. For her national work in the area of immigration reform she has been recognized with the Mary Rhodes Award from the Order of the Sisters of Loretto, and with the Lives of Commitment Award from Auburn School of Theology. The Arizona Interfaith Movement also recognized her with its Golden Rule Religious Award. She has served on the World Methodist Council and been a delegate to the World Council of Churches Assembly.
She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Pan American and Perkins School of Theology of Southern Methodist University. Both schools have honored her with their highest alumni recognitions. She is married to Thomas L. Spaniolo, a lawyer who specializes in immigration and criminal law. They have a daughter, Sofia T. Spaniolo-Carcaño, who is a student at Columbia College in Chicago, Illinois.
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Defining Disgraceful (The Hill)
TCE Appoints the Los Angeles Bishop of the United Methodist Church to Board (California Endowment)