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Senior Moments

Category: Aging, General / Topics: Demographics Relationships Trends


by Dan Seagren

Posted: December 2, 2018

A new "micro-generation"?…


Millennial/Xennial cohort, (some single, some couples with kids) is here. Where it is heading who knows? I sure don't. That's why some seniors, more or less, never dealt with these classifications so perhaps it is time to take a quick look. The Xennial, which refers to those born between 1977 and 1983, often described as having neither the cynicism of Xers or the optimism of Millennials, a key difference is that they grew up before technology became ubiquitous (present, omnipresent). The Xennials, often described as endowed with cynicism but not the optimism of Millennials. Consequently numbers and characteristics can be arguable.

This came from a female (woman) pastor who asked for assistance: What kinds of materials do you use for adult Sunday School? In particular, the Millenial/Xennial (some are old enough to be married and have children). The Millennials are the largest group of 80 million born between 1981 and 1996 although only 40 percent of millennials identify with the word “millennial” compared to nearly 80 percent of those aged 51 to 69 who consider themselves part of the Baby Boomer generation. Some talk about the cynicism of the Xennials so exact dates and definitions are iffy.

If the Xennials are a newly-discovered “micro-generation,” sandwiched between Generation X and Millenials plus an unknown Generation Z are changing everything in the supply chain and are most unlike old guard of freight forwarders, typically Boomers or older Gen-Xers, can there be enough learned to predict accurately? Go to Pew and similar organizations for more precise studies and opinions.

Back to our Sunday School lady pastor's predicament. Having likely gone through decades of women in the pastorate pros and cons, she might well be prepared to ask for assistance in materials and techniques for best reaching these Millennial/Xennial/GenX/GenZ and before long, GenZ+ since it is too late for Baby Boomers and its predecessor(s). Maybe it might be best to somewhat forget ideal techniques and materials and concentrate mostly on the Holy Book with loving and caring for the students regardless of age or sex including activities, parties, visits and other social events which worked when I was a preteen on up -- 80 years ago.

Some things change so quickly it is difficult to keep up. Older tested efforts may work under most situations. This is one of those more recent developments that occurs that may fade in time.

Editor's Note: Dan is right about the change of names and definitions for age cohorts—and the existence of "micro-generations." For a description of commonly accepted generations, including the newest, Generation Z, see my blog "Generation Z" (there is a list at the end of the blog showing variations in the most common generational groupings).

Dan Seagren is an active retiree whose writings reflect his life as a Pastor, author of several books, and service as a Chaplain in a Covenant Retirement Community.

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Posted: December 2, 2018

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