Anne Shirley has now been married to Gilbert Blythe for 15 years, and the couple have six children: Jem, Walter, Nan, Di, Shirley, and Rilla. After a trip to London, Anne returns to the news that a new minister has arrived in Glen St. Mary. John Meredith is a widower with four young children: Gerald (Jerry), Faith, Una, and Thomas Carlyle (Carl). The children have not been properly brought up since the death of their mother, with only their father (who is easily absorbed by matters of theology) to parent them. The children are considered wild and mischievous by many of the families in the village (who tend only to hear about the Meredith children when they have gotten into some kind of scrape), causing them to question Mr. Meredith's parenting skills and his suitability as a minister.