The sign we give at the celebration of Mass most probably really illustrates the real attitude most of us have to the Cross, it hangs about behind us, loons over our shoulder but is mainly ignored.
Something very profound is being said when crucifix, altar, tabernacle and priest are seperated. When the priest actually stands with his back to the Cross, stands between the Cross and the congregation rather than linking them. When the Cross becomes a mere backdrop to the liturgy rather than its focus, what is being said?
Despite Jesus' words most of us avoid the Cross, few of us want to embrace it or to adore this instrument of death and salvation.
It is fallen human nature to run away from anything that speaks of death, pain, self abnegation. It is uncomfortable for us to acknowledge we are sinners and that Redemption is dependant not on us but on the Crucified Christ.
The criticism of contemporary catechesis and the modern liturgy that it avoids the Cross and Sacrifice should not be dismissed lightly, it is the very "crux" of the Gospel.
Quite literally, most of the Gospel's are about Jesus' Passion and death. Page for page, verse for verse the Gospels are about the Passion and Crucifixion, not teaching, not miracles and not even the Ressurrection.
The New Testament or New Covenant is made through the death of the Lamb on the altar of the Cross. It is Christ's death we are meant to proclaim until he comes in Glory: When we eat this Bread and drink this Cup, we proclaim your death, O Lord, until you come again.