New York state's cap on religious gathering capacity was blocked by a federal judge on Friday, but attendees must still adhere to social distancing of at least 6 feet.
The legal challenge to the occupancy limit had been filed by Catholic priests in Central New York and a rabbi in the state's Hudson Valley region.
The ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Gary Sharpe rejected Gov. Andrew Cuomo's capacity on religious services, which is growing from 25 percent in Phase 2 and 3 regions to 33 percent of overall occupancy in Phase 4.
But that is in conflict with restaurants and other businesses that are limited to 50 percent capacity indoors. Sharpe's ruling will set churches, synagogues and mosques at that capacity limit.
The state is also being blocked from enforcing any capaicty limit on outdoor religious services.
And Sharpe noted in his ruling both the governor and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke approvingly of people participating in outdoor protests against police brutality and religious discrimination.
Still, with the capacity limits eased, attendees at the services must still follow New York's guidance that people keep six feet apart while indoors.