February 2, 2014

Those whose earliest liturgical memories include the 1990’s and beyond constitutes the final generation for whom this liturgical series applies.  Because of the previous generation’s experience of steady change, this generation’s encounter of the liturgy has been marked by the liturgical variety that was its fruit.  However, during this time a new liturgical trend emerged.  Perhaps in reaction to the seemingly constant array of changes, there was a resurgence of interest in the older form of the Mass, the Mass as it was before the Second Vatican Council.  Now set before the ‘Gen X’ generation was a wider spectrum of liturgical varieties from which they could choose. 

The reaction of this generation to their liturgical encounter has been less tense than previous ones.  Because they have neither a negative association nor an endearing nostalgia with the past, they have been generally more open and intrigued by the traditional Catholic liturgy.  This has given rise to more widespread use of the 1963 Missal. 

It is clear that the three generations, generally speaking, have had markedly different liturgical experiences.  If one were to inquire about liturgical preferences, there would be an incredible diversity of opinion among the generations, the result of merely fifty years.  Such a diversity of opinion fifty years ago would have been unheard of.  Yet this diversity all sits within the same pews at Sunday Mass week in and week out.  Whose tastes should be accommodated?  Whose preferences should be imposed on the whole?  These are the questions that characterize our current situation. 

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