When Calls the Heart” is still at the beginning of its seventh season and the faithfulness, of the Hallmark Channel drama’s fans, is definitely proving to be stronger than ever. It's a milestone for any drama, among the myriad of TV Shows, to even reach seven seasons but, for the centerpiece series of the network, Season 7 is going strong and proving to be filled with heart in many ways.

Per numbers reported by Showbiz CheatSheet on March 8, “When Calls the Heart” celebrated its highest-rated premiere since the show's debut with Season 7’s “A Moving Picture.” The community of Hope Valley has continued to be a place of kindness, forgiveness, and redemption through the themes of “Heart of a Father” and the most recent “Family Matters” episode, which aired March 8.

In an extended preview of March 15’s “Sweet and Sour,” posted March 9, “When Calls the Heart” seems to mirror current headlines (to a less alarming degree). An illness outbreak strikes Hope Valley. Petty differences are put aside for the greater good and the most enduring love in the community comes through a scare.

Strong numbers to welcome ‘When Calls the Heart’ to seventh season

Sunday nights are special times for “Hearties,” who eagerly wait, through the week, for each episode of “When Calls the Heart.” No matter how sentimental faithful viewers may be, numbers tell the story in the television land. The Season 7 premiere on February 23 drew 2.9 million viewers in the live +3 range, including those who watch the broadcast and those who stream the episode within three days after airing.

The 3.0 household rating was the highest-rated “When Calls the Heart” premiere since the series premiere in 2014. The good news wasn't just for the drama set in the Northwest Territory community. “When Hope Calls” drew 2 million viewers. The sister series, also developed from the author, Janette Oke, had previously aired only through Hallmark Movies Now, the network’s video-on-demand streaming platform.

With twice as much to love in family-friendly drama, both of the series, and their talented casts, should thrive together for a long time.

‘When Calls the Heart’ faces sickness in Hope Valley

It's very hard to imagine anything that “When Calls the Heart” and “The Walking Dead” share in common with their fan bases.

The Hallmark Channel favorite comes in second only to the AMC series, and in several ratings’ sweeps, the shows are side-by-side.

In this coming weekend’s “Sweet and Sour,” Hope Valley rallies to stave off sickness and death through the combined efforts of the citizens. Chickenpox is no laughing matter in the 1910s, and when Rosemary Coulter (Pascale Hutton) progresses from two spots on her arm to bedridden with a high fever, her ever-faithful husband, Lee (Kavan Smith) never leaves her side. Nurse, Faith Carter (Andrea Brooks) is equally steadfast in holding strong through the siege, all while making her decision about her dream of being a doctor over her immediate future with Dr. Carson Shepherd (Paul Greene).

Henry Gowen (Martin Cummins) is under the scrutiny of Judge Bill Avery (Jack Wagner), once more, and Constable Grant (Kevin McGarry) and Lucas Bouchard (Chris McNally) embark together on a mission to help their community. “When Calls the Heart” never runs low on loyalty and Elizabeth (Erin Krakow) persists in her faith that people can change, as Lucas affirms that she “deserves nothing less” than unconditional love.

From new love on ‘When Calls the Heart’ to a baby daughter and driver’s licenses

Elizabeth has her toddler son to consider as the first priority in her life, and no one can blame her for savoring the attentions of two handsome suitors after enduring such loss in her newlywed life. She is entitled to take her time in welcoming new romance, but for another “When Calls the Heart” couple, their new love is already being tested.

Paul Greene and Andrea Brooks stopped by “Home & Family” for a chat on March 9 and reflected on the sacrifice and loyalty already reflected in their characters’ blossoming love. Faith has just been approved to study to become a doctor, needing only two courses in Chicago. Carson is completely supportive of her dream. He even gives her his old anatomy book for good luck. Long-distance love is never easy, though, and this will be Faith’s first-ever experience in a huge city, with daunting studies to boot. These two already know about selfless love, and fans can only hope that the “When Calls the Heart” lovebirds stay strong across the miles.

In real life, the co-stars are proud and doting parents to children at different stages.

Brooks can't stop gushing about her beautiful 10-week-old daughter, Viola. Even the mention of her name got the actress emotional. The new mom said that her best birthday gift was to spend time with her daughter and share all the wonderful “firsts” of occasions, sights, and smells in baby-hood.

Paul Greene is going through another kind of transition with his son, Oliver. The teen has just gotten his driver's license, and dad isn't even worried. “He's a great kid,” Greene justifiably brags. “Very responsible,” Brooks chimes in for verification. Greene said that not only has his self-transporting son been very helpful, but he also has his own business reselling quality sneakers.

On-screen and off “When Calls the Heart” and its versatile cast know about being industrious and making the numbers work, and so do the drama’s devoted fans.

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