From a priest:
As I prepare to take some time away from the during Christmastide, it occurs to me that all of the altars in my home town will have large, practically immovable, Nativity scenes in front of them.
I intend to say the EF exclusively while I am away. Do you have recommendations on what to do in such a situation. My thought is that I will treat the tabernacle as the high altar and treat the altar, facing the nave, as a side altar. This will still force me to offer Mass with my back directly to the tabernacle. The only alternative that I can think of is to use an antemensium and set up a makeshift altar in my parents’ home.
Reverend Father, you just deal with it. There are rubrics for the Extraordinary Form for altars that are versus populum. There had to be, since some old Roman basilicas have altars oriented that way in imitation of the first and second St. Peter’s Basilica.