So I asked him, "Why not you? Why are you still following Jesus? What made the difference?"
His answer (loosely paraphrased) was intriguing:
Most of these guys who fell away were in leadership in our youth group and very close to the youth pastor. I always wanted to be in that group but for whatever reason could not join. After the youth pastor left, many of them quickly became discouraged. But since I had to learn to follow Jesus on my own, I didn't stop once the youth pastor was gone.
Wow. What do you think of that? Re-read it if you need to.
One challenge that pops to mind from his explanation:
Who are the people in your ministry following? Are they following you? Or are they following Jesus?