Talkin’ ‘Bout My Generation

I’m going to ask for help from my seminary friends here, although I’m aware that the one I’m most desiring to have input from, Mark Traphagen, is mired in finals right now. But someone else may have an answer for me here. In Monday’s entry, I glossed over something that started bothering me as soon as I read it in church on Sunday:

31So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near. 32Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all has taken place. 33Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

Luke 21:31-33, English Standard Version (emphasis mine)

If “this generation” meant people alive when Jesus was alive, then … what the crap have we been doing these last couple millenia?

I’ve come to the idea that “this generation” has to be a poor approximation for the Greek, and that it’s more about the movement that Jesus created in His coming to the world—that Christianity would not die out before Jesus’s triumphant return. However, not being a Bible scholar, this is pure conjecture on my part, and I am willing to listen to whoever may provide direction.