While the high point in Rev. Dr. Swope's tenure had to be the consecration of St. Matthew's Church in 1888, his true legacy to the congregation was a high level of community service. Besides the missions in Elm Grove and South Wheeling, St. Matthew's people were most active in meeting other challenges in the city.
Two examples were the founding of Altenheim Home for the Aged and the Wheeling Y.M.C.A. Additionally, 10 St. Matthew's women formed a guild known as the "Hospital Ten," that raised money to buy the property to build Wheeling's City Hospital, now Ohio Valley Medical Center. Also, during Rev. Dr. Swope's ministry, a rectory was built next to the church. Membership grew, and a $20,000 indebtedness for the rectory, a new organ and remodeling at the church was cleared. Rev. Dr. Swope concluded a productive 19-year ministry when he resigned in March 1894 to accept a call to All Souls Church on the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, N.C.
The Reverend Nathaniel Seymour Thomas of St. Paul's Church, Leavenworth, Kansas, succeeded Rev. Dr. Swope and took up his duties in October 1897. While greatly loved and respected, Rev. Mr. Thomas accepted a call in November 1899 to the Church of the Holy Apostles in Philadelphia.