The most popular churches and mosques in Canberra are struggling to adjust to the ban on meetings of more than a hundred people.
Religious leaders said they would obey the rule putting a limit on bigger gatherings but they were devising imaginative ways to keep worship going.
Some churches were moving services online. Others were planning to limit attendance inside church with overflow seating outside.
The Canberra Islamic Centre has decided not to hold collective prayers because of the government instruction.
On Friday, the Reverend David Campbell of St Andrew's Presbyterian Church expects more than a hundred people to a memorial service for one of the church's faithful servants.
He thought 100 mourners would be allowed in but the rest would be seated outside at least one and a half metres from each other, as the anti-virus rules now stipulate. The service would be relayed out on speakers.
The regular Sunday morning 9.30 service often gets between 150 and 200 worshippers, and Reverend Campbell thought the same arrangement could work there.
But he was adamant that "the last thing I want to see is the church doors closed".
"Being the church by Parliament House, I want to keep the services going," he said, adding, "within the regulations".
"People still need a place to turn to in these harrowing times."
Some of the other churches in Canberra are moving worship online.
At the Life Unlimited church which holds big and very vocal services in Belconnen, Gunghalin and in the Palace Electric Cinema, they were working hard on Wednesday to install equipment for remote worship.
They already stream services live from what they call their "campus" in Belconnen but were installing more equipment in the light of the cap on the size of the congregation in the church itself.
"We intend to make the church bigger by making it smaller," one church worker said about the plans to increase the electronic connection between pastors and congregants spread across the city and beyond.
Another evangelical church - Horizon - plans to video sermons and put them online. Video conferencing would be used for prayer meetings and Bible study.
"We are trying to keep people connected even if they have to isolate", one of the pastors, Margo Wagg, said.
The coronavirus crisis had meant much change at the church. Seats were spaced further apart. "We've told the congregation not to shake hands, just to wave," the pastor said.
Instead of the church tea involving plates of cake shared around, individual plates for each person were now offered.
The church is also trying to get the money collection done online rather than in the church itself.
The changes are causing distress. At the oldest church in Canberra, the rector no longer shakes hands at the door after services.
The Reverend Paul Black of St John's Anglican Church which was built before Canberra was created said it was "extremely odd" not to shake hands. "I've stood at the door for over 30 years and shaken hands with people."
In some Christian services, worshippers clasp each other's hands and say "Peace be with you". Reverend Black said they didn't shake hands at St John's. "We look at people in the eye and they respond".
He feared that next Sunday's services would be the last while the crisis lasts. He expects a full ban.
The Catholic Church in the Canberra and Goulburn archdiocese said it was considering what to do about the ceiling on numbers.
A spokesman for the Canberra Islamic Centre said suspending prayers was "not an easy decision" but they were following the law. Given the official edict, not holding prayers was consistent with their religious beliefs.
The mosque remains open for individuals to pray. Its school is closed.
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