The season premiere episode begins with the Waltons sitting around the radio listening to the announcement that England is now at war with Germany, really setting the scene for the focus of the next few Waltons seasons.
With Reverend Fordwick moving out of Waltons Mountain, the task for choosing a new minister falls with Olivia Walton, Sarah Bridges and Corabeth Godsey. In order to do this they head to Boatwright University to select the new minister, one of whom is Hank Buchanan, who is a young rebel minister, quite unconventional but gets things done. Both Sarah and Olivia believe they should give him a chance, but Corabeth seems to have reservations.
When Hank arrives on the mountain, he becomes very friendly with John Walton, with John finding him normal and down to earth. On his first Sunday, he is invited to the Waltons for lunch, then John and Hank head off to look for a fishing place, and wind up playing cards with Yancy and Horace all afternoon instead. Naturally Olivia is horrified and wonders whether the right choice has been made.
Erin is quite taken with him and he with her. After going to the movies, they drive to Hank's home where they begin listening to his records. This leads to the couple dancing quite closely and unfortunately they are seen by Mrs Brimmer, who is calling by to see Hank. Naturally she mentions it to Corabeth and the gossips start spreading their innocent date around. Further misunderstandings occur and finally Hank resigns his position and prepares to leave the mountain. Both Olivia and Sarah are convinced though that he is just what the people need, so John speaks to Hank to try to persuade him to change his mind and stay. Finally Hank admits to his congregation that he is a man of God, however he is also a man and enjoys all of the things that men enjoy.
- Joe Conley as Ike Godsey
- Ronnie Claire Edwards as Corabeth Walton Godsey
- Lynn Carlin as Sarah Giffen
- Robert Donner as Yancy Tucker
- Rachel Longaker as Aimee Godsey
- A. Wilford Brimley as Horace Brimley
- Nora Marlowe as Mrs Florence Brimmer
- Sheila Allen as Fanny Tatum
- George D. Wallace as Dean Beck
- Dorothy Shay as Thelma Bloome
- NOTE 2: Mariclaire Costello (Rosemary Hunter Fordwick) also moved to another show that season, The Fitzpatricks, which only had a short run.
- NOTE 1: John Ritter (Reverend Matthew Fordwick) moved from Waltons Mountain and into Three's Company during this season, a sit com that was very successful.