A picture is worth a thousand words! When one is offering Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament it is usually celebrated ad orientem in terms of the prayer that is chanted or recited prior to the actual Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament. Obvious prayer, all prayer, is directed to Jesus Christ (Who in Benediction is directly in front of the congregation and the priest who joins the congregation in facing the same direction). It would be silly and down right disrespectful for the Holy Father or any bishop, priest or deacon to turn away from the monstrance and face the congregation to pray the prayer prior to Benediction, no?
Why in the name of God and all that is holy would any bishop or priest think facing the congregation to pray in confrontation to them is a great innovation in Catholic liturgical prayer? Just who sold us this bill of goods?
Pope Francis at last night's Corpus Christi Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament at a portable altar in front of the Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome. Please note the wonderful, portable altar's decorative features! Reform of the Reform in continuity at work in a very popular devotion!
Am I the only one who if I were in the congregation at this Mass would find this way of a priest praying as he confronts me, off putting? I would in fact be praying for a miracle of God that instantly the priest and concelebrants would face ad orientem, then I wouldn't be offended by their pious smirks and facial expression, they could do as they please!