Throughout her childhood in southeast Idaho, USA, Bonnie Hillam Cordon learned many important life lessons. Working, playing, and living on a farm taught her self-reliance, hard work, and “not to be afraid to try things,” says the new second counselor in the Primary general presidency.
The most important lesson, however, came from her parents, Harold and Carol Rasmussen Hillam, who taught her that with the help of the Lord, she could do anything. “There are no limits,” her father would say.
Sister Cordon relied on that knowledge as a newly called missionary in Lisbon, Portugal, struggling to learn Portuguese. “I was on my knees a lot asking for a miracle. But because of my father, I had learned that I could do hard things.”
After much prayer, work, and patience, she slowly became fluent in Portuguese, which blessed her many years later when she and her husband were called to serve in Curitiba, Brazil.
“It’s interesting how the Lord prepares us and builds us, a little at a time,” she says. “It always makes more sense when we look in the rearview mirror. We just have to have faith.”
Bonnie Hillam was born on March 11, 1964, in Idaho Falls, Idaho. After her mission she studied education at Brigham Young University, in Provo, Utah, USA. While there she became good friends with Derek Lane Cordon. Their friendship blossomed into romance, and the two were married on April 25, 1986, in the Salt Lake Temple. They have four children—three boys and one girl—and three grandsons.
Through the years they have served in many Church callings. She served with her husband as he presided over the Brazil Curitiba Mission from 2010 to 2013, and she has served as a stake Young Women president, nursery leader, and seminary teacher, and in ward Young Women, Relief Society, and Primary organizations.
In her new assignment, Sister Cordon says she hopes to teach one essential truth to the Primary children of the Church: “Heavenly Father loves them.”