Update 6 p.m.: A&E has confirmed that Duck Dynasty has completed filming of Season 5, and it will premiere Jan. 15.
Original story: As the debate over Phil Robertson's anti-gay remarks rages, with political conservatives and Christian groups voicing support in statement and online petitions, the Duck Dynasty family patriarch is not jumping into the fray.
Robertson, who issued a statement Wednesday when the story erupted, spent Wednesday evening at his longtime church, praying for a young woman who suffers from cancer, the TV star's pastor told CNN in an exclusive interview.
"Phil led us in prayer," said Mike Kellett of White's Ferry Road Church of Christ in West Monroe, La. "There were greater things on our minds than the firestorm of controversy about this article."
Asked how Robertson, who is an elder in the church (which means he offers counsel and helps lead Bible study), is taking the criticism of his remarks on homosexuality, Kellett said, "He's very calm, and very confident that if he serves the Lord, God will take care of everything."
Ann Oldenburg, USA TODAY