Anyone who loves “When Calls the Heart” knows that Hope Valley is a community grounded in the things that money cannot buy. Faith, trust, determination, hope, and leaning on the strength of one another is at the core of this community. May 12’s sixth episode for season 6, “Disputing Hearts,” centers on how quickly the prospect of wealth can distort some people's values, and put others’ in perspective.

Communication and compromise are essential in any close relationship, whether business or personal. Both require practice, too.

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An expert in the field

Dr. Carson Shepherd (Paul Greene) is on solid footing in his relationship with Faith (Andrea Brooks), but since the disclosure of her fractured relationship with her father, Carson is determined to do his part to bring some healing.

Henry Gowen (Martin Cummins) has just about optioned every parcel of land possible for oil drilling, thanks to the funds from Lucas Bouchard (Chris McNally). Lucas asks that his name be kept silent in these proceedings since he lures enough town gossip as things are.

Elizabeth (Erin Krakow) doesn't hide her surprise over how an oil strike affects life on 'When Calls the Heart.' - [Hallmark / YouTube screencap]
Elizabeth (Erin Krakow) doesn't hide her surprise over how an oil strike affects life on 'When Calls the Heart.' - [Hallmark / YouTube screencap]

The situation only adds one more secret for the already mysterious saloon owner.

Bad feelings break out between neighbors, Mr. Lawson (Robert Parent) and Mr. Wolf (Nick Hunnings) who have land intersecting a route needed by Lee Coulter (Kavan Smith) for the transport of his lumber. Their sons, Robert and Timmy (Jaiven Natt and Christian Michael Cooper), try to enlist the fathers in the same problem-solving method used by Mrs. Thornton (Erin Krakow) at school, giving them time to solve the issue and apologize.

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The dreams of oil preclude such a possibility, and ultimately, Constable Grant (Kevin McGarry) and Sheriff Bill Avery (Jack Wagner) step in to arbitrate. Lawson agrees to open this gate for 24 hours, and Lee must rush to fulfill the order to one of his most vital clients.

Rosemary Coulter (Pascale Hutton) is still not able to vocalize her yearning for a child. Hutton's portrayal is completely palpable and real, and the coming weeks should be a stellar showcase for the actress.

Rosemary visits Dr. Shepherd, who tells her she is in tip-top physical shape, while she tells him that “something is not quite right.” He prescribes “a healthy dose of communication” with her husband.

On another site, a “gusher” of oil arrives, and the whole community is jubilant, as ordinary residents begin clearing out shelves of digging implements for finding surface oil. Florence Blakely (Loretta Walsh) even ventures to try full-time employment as a telephone operator, thanks to Fiona (Kayla Wallace).

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Florence is cautioned about sharing information on the common party line, coming from the person who listened in on Lucas Bouchard when he came to town. Despite shorting out the switchboard with her coffee, Florence only needs a little encouragement to get proficient in her new job. All those wires do look alike. Her on-the-job training was a “When Calls the Heart” hilarious diversion.

For the common good and more than a glance

Another refreshing aspect of the episode was seeing Elizabeth speaking her opinion, and standing her ground.

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When she sees Lawson and Wolf squabbling in the street, she reminds them that they are examples for their sons, and “better than this.”

Elizabeth is pouring her efforts into starting the town library and organizing donated books on the shelves even though it doesn't look likely that anyone will be willing to pay the higher taxes for the facility that will benefit everyone. Lucas Bouchard drops by with a big hint of his support, saying “every town needs a library,” naturally prompting the teacher’s agreement. There is far more than a passive glance between the two, and “When Calls the Heart” fans can see more coming.

Elizabeth also learns more about Allie (Jaeda Lily Miller) from Nathan, coming to understand her comfort with isolation and difficulty making friends. The new girl in the school lost her mother at four, had no involvement of her father, and no one intervened to raise her apart from Nathan Grant. The transient life of being a Mountie meant never staying long and never becoming too invested in people, for both Nathan and his niece.

While Elizabeth works with Allie on building relationships just by being herself, Nathan also agrees to promote her self-worth more at home. A bridge of trust is born through reading one day when Elizabeth conveys her shared love of “Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.” Elizabeth immediately sees that Allie is sharp as a razor, but not sure of herself. When she observes Allie helping Opal (Ava Grace Cooper) in math, she feels satisfied with the small step of progress.

Crossed wires

Henry Gowen quits his job with Lee, which doesn't come as a surprise. Lee cautions that chances to start over don’t come often in life, so the businessman should take care of this one. Henry already has his share of disputes over the land rights, since so many were willing to sign on the dotted line without realizing they signed away all mineral rights.

Jesse (Aren Buchholz) feels duped amidst all the newfound wealth, but Clara (Eva Bourne) reminds him that “We have each other,” and enough to make their start at a new homestead. The looks between her and Henry Gowen are disconcerting.

Bill makes a legal intervention on the land, citing a law concerning necessary easement. Later, he and Lee talk about his inspiration for being “a lawman” over one who interprets the law. He is still torn over the offer to become a judge.

Rosemary is frantically working at her dress shop, and drawing the concern of everyone around her. She prepares a beautiful dinner for Lee, who is very late coming home. She wants to share her heart, but he is consumed by the issues of the day, and the dilemma that may overtake his business in the future in the wake of the oil exploration. Her eyes speak volumes, but this time, the attentive husband doesn’t notice.

Carson locates the number of David Carter, Faith’s father, with Fiona's help. He calls to arrange a more meaningful call. He brings Faith to the telephone at the store, where her father will be calling soon. She hesitates, but the call is already connecting. Her eyes do the talking when her father asks, “Is that you?” Carson feels the joy of giving a truly selfless gift.

Another of those gifts will be coming for Elizabeth, per next week's preview. No amount of riches can replace the deeper treasures in life. Caring about what matters most to a loved one can lead to incredible possibilities. Hope never runs dry on “When Calls the Heart.”

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