The congregation soon outgrew its original structure, and construction on the present church building was begun in 1894. It was completed four years later under the supervision of James Vester Miller, a former slave whose company built a number of prominent churches and civic buildings in Asheville. The new Gothic style brick building was consecrated on July 7, 1898, as St. Matthias’ Church, in honor of the 13th Apostle who, according to legend, was an early missionary to Africa.
St. Matthias’ interior features elaborate woodwork, beautiful stained glass windows, a Midmer (tracker) pipe organ, and excellent acoustics. The interior woodwork is considered to be the most sophisticated of any church in the area built during the latter part of the 19th century.
The adjoining Chapel was added at the turn of the century and consecrated in 1901. The entire structure as it now stands was financed on a pay-as-you-go basis and is reported to have cost a total of $13,000 (!). It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.
Its present-day congregation is ethnically mixed, community minded, and strongly committed to carrying on the rich legacy of worship, music, education, and service which our forebears have bequeathed to us.