After Fr. Wilson’s retirement in 1926, the two rectors who succeeded him, Granville Mercer Williams and Gregory Mabry, continued the work he had begun into the 1930s and 40s. During the Great Depression, St. Paul’s managed a store that provided groceries and clothing below wholesale cost or for free; St. Paul’s Dispensary provided medical care; St. Paul’s employment agency helped the jobless find work; and its free kindergarten was the largest in Brooklyn.
Social barriers also continued to fall at St. Paul’s. A West Indian community arrived at the church between 1928 and 1934 seeking full participation and equal access to the sacraments. They walked to church from their homes near Fulton Landing each Sunday, and their descendants became leaders of St. Paul’s, later welcoming two generations of arrivals from the West Indian community who would sustain the parish into the 1980s.
In the postwar 1950s and 60s, urban flight to the suburbs and new Spanish-speaking immigrant families brought further changes to South Brooklyn. St. Paul’s began offering a Spanish Mass to better serve its neighbors, but by the 1970s, again found itself in decline. In 1981, Bishop Robert Campbell Witcher sent Reverend Samuel Otis Cross to assess whether the diocese should close the church and sell the property. The congregation at the time, about twenty-five people in total, was made up of mostly older members who had grown up in the church.