Many people have assailed His Holiness the Pope for praying towards the direction of Mecca during his visit to the Blue or Sultanahmet Mosque in Constantinople. His posture during the prayer was also condemned.
You can't quite see it in most shots. But take a closer look and check out what the Pope was touching when the was praying?
I think its great that a Pope can go into the most important mosque in Turkey and say a prayer clutching his pectoral cross. He's the Pope, he can jolly well face any direction and pray in any posture he jolly well chooses. I'm sure some people have lived West of Mecca and faced it while praying ad orientem.
The posture does make it less obvious that he was holding on to his cross, perhaps to prevent his hosts from dragging him out of the building and stoning him on the spot?
1 hour ago