The swine flu scare has recently prompted one of the leading spiritual figures of the ultra-Orthodox world to change one of Judaism's time-honored traditions - that of drinking wine together from the same glass.
Yaakov Aryeh Alter, seventh and current rabbi of the Hasidic dynasty of Ger, instructed his disciples in Jerusalem a few weeks ago to toast with individual and disposable plastic cups containing a few drops of wine from the rabbi's own glass.
Hasidic Jews have toasted from the same cup at events and meals for at least 200 years.
The rabbi, who heads the largest Hasidic group in Israel, is known for his sensitivity to health issues. A few years ago, when Israel was gripped by the avian flu scare, he refrained from eating eggs until he received ones specially-imported from abroad.
But it seems religious liquids are seen as problematic:
A bishop has advised that holy water be removed from churches in a bid to halt the spread of swine flu. The Bishop of Chelmsford, the Right Reverend John Gladwin, said at some churches people were invited make a sign of the cross using holy water.
"The water in stoups can easily become a source of infection and a means of rapidly spreading the virus," he said.