"He grew up in the South, and we had to put up with so much prejudice that that is why we left."
In a 1984 Inquirer interview, Mr. Brandenburg said his congregation had decided to create a group house after visiting a shared residence in Boston.
"What we're doing is creating a new form of housing, which combines the resource of abandoned houses with the needs of low-income single people, especially the elderly."
The Fund for Human Development obtained the house on Pine Street near 51st Street cost-free through the city's gift-property program, and renovated it with loans and grants.
At Calvary, Mr. Brandenburg also helped set up Neighborhood Resources West for legal and health services, a radio station, a food co-op, and a program to prepare women for high school equivalency tests.
During his time, his wife said, Calvary was one of four churches that bought a bank at 50th Street and Baltimore Avenue and converted it into a credit union for the neighborhood.
"The bank is still there," his wife said, as a branch of the Philadelphia Federal Credit Union.
From 1985 to 1991, between his positions at the West Philadelphia and Bala Cynwyd churches, Mr. Brandenburg was district superintendent of the South District of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of the United Methodist Church, which covered parts of the city and its western suburbs.
Mr. Brandenburg grew up in Homestead, Fla., where, his wife said, "his father was a big-time farmer in Georgia and Florida. He spent the winter in Florida and the summers at the Georgia farm."
He earned a bachelor's degree in sociology at Emory University in Atlanta in 1953 and a master's in divinity at Union Theological Seminary in New York City in 1955, when he became Methodist campus minister at Duke University.
In 1961, he became the Methodist chaplain at Yale University and, as part of the Yale Religious Ministry, was arrested and jailed during a civil rights protest in St. Augustine, Fla.
In 1966, he earned a master's degree in sociology at the University of Chicago.
Mr. Brandenburg served for a time as president of the National United Methodist Campus Ministers Association.
In addition to his wife, Mr. Brandenburg is survived by a son, Mark.
A memorial service was set for 11 a.m. Saturday, July 28, at Calvary Church, 801 S. 48th St., Philadelphia.
Contact Walter F. Naedele at 215-854-5607 or email@example.com.