Why not do our own thing?
A few comments about "ad orientem" celebrations of the Mass focus on the permission from the bishop needed for such a move in the Post-Vatican II Liturgy.
My contention is that we are not congregationalists and thus the bishop should be seen as the primary liturgist of the diocese. This being my understanding of the liturgical role of the bishop, I would never choose to change the orientation of the Mass without consulting with the bishop and seeking his guidance and input. Facing the people has been the post-Vatican II norm, whether advisable or not. Even Pope Benedict continues to do this as the norm. Ad Orientem is the exception.
Now many argue that progressives do their own thing without ever contacting the bishop. I agree. But do two wrongs make a right? Shouldn't those of us who want to follow "policy," "say the black and do the red" and want to uphold the traditional values of the Church which includes respect and obedience for the Holy Father and the bishops in union with him, take the higher road and leave the progressives in the dust on this one?
Finally, I don't think we should impose upon people something they are not requesting. When we began the celebration of the EF Mass in this parish, we had a poll to ask people to let me know if they were interested in it. We had over 130 people say they were. But this polling was at the direction of the Bishop.
I'm not oppose to ad orientem, but what another commenting priest wrote that the crucifix dead center on the altar according the norm of our Holy Father, Pope Benedict, suffices to help orient the priest and the congregation to our Lord during the celebration of His One Sacrifice. It does so without yanking the people and priest around again.
From my own experience of having placed a crucifix on the altar that the priest can see, this indeed helps the priest to focus his eyes not on the congregation, but on our Lord crucified.