In my experience, many priests are spot-on with Rome, 100%. However, some seem to lack the whole spirit and letter of the law. The sometimes lean too far one way or the other. For example: rock music in the “Teen Mass”. Not really sanctioned by Rome, is it? Another example: For “added beauty” music is used during teh consecration. Another faux pas.
How is it that some people, who read teh same books as others, do not see the reason for following the exact words of the GIRM?
You are asking a question that has no simple answer.
The simplest and perhaps most simplistic answer I can give you is that the Church is experiencing a severe breakdown in its heirarchical structure; priests have been given free reign to do whatever they want, with no correction from anybody, and they have taken advantage of this.
Bishops simply do not see it as their place to “tell their priests what to do,” much less discipline them.
Lay people, because of the fear of going to hell, feel that it is never, ever their place to correct a priest, no matter how wrong he is (pietaphiles, that is, adherents to the pieta prayer book, will know what I mean).
Pastors, especially in well-populated areas, feel that they have to make their masses more attractive and more fun, lest their parishoners remove themselves (and their weekly donations) to a parish which is more “progressive” and “vibrant” (dear Lord, how I have come to hate those two words!).
Those are three reasons which I believe to be valid and accurate answers to your questions. The list could go on.
(P.S. In the world of logic, there is a fallacy called the “Accident Fallacy”. This is essentially the application of a general rule to an atypical specific case. It is like saying that, because of freedom of speech, a man who yells “fire!” in a crowded theater should not be prosecuted.
I mention this now because I am sure that someone who just read my posting is ready to blast that mean old MichiganTrumbul with comments like “Well, not ALL bishops/priests/lay people are like that!”
Be assured that I am aware of this, and be mindful of the Accident Fallacy when you respond.)
Seminary training, starting some time in the 70’s, pretty much slid into the toilet in any number of seminaries. Many priests were poorly formed in terms of the Magisterium, and what, if anything, fidelity to the Church and to the bishop meant. We have at least one generation of priests who started out with the best intentions of the world. They were taught poorly, often with no way of determining what was right, what was necessary, what was important. Liturgy was not taught from a theoretical point of what we do and why we do it and what the history is of how we got to (any given point) in liturgy; it was taught more in terms of experiential and experimental application. They were coming from a period of time (the 60’s)when the mantra was “don’t trust anyone over 30”, and that subtley carried over in terms of Rome (seen as dithering about inconsequentials while the world was going up in smoke) and the bishop (often seen as not “with it”).
Much of the criticism is by a different generation with different viewpoints, different experiences, and different values and the communication gap is about as big now as it has been throughout history.
Much of the problem will self-correct simply as they die out; and then we will have a different set of problems to deal with. It is like watching Call to Action or one of the other protest groups who sprung up years ago. A recent picture showed a bunch of 50+ year old “grey heads”; there wan’t one person under forty (and probably under 55) in the group. They will eventually all die off as they are not able to recruit anyone younger; different issues, different points of view. Patience is a virtue.