PROVO Brigham Young University President Jeffrey R. Holland has been invited to serve on a new task force made up of leading members of the Christian and Jewish communities and sponsored by B'nai B'rith International.

John J. Phelan Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of the New York Stock Exchange, is chairman of the 16-member Inter-Religious Task Force, which represents interests from across the nation. Phelan invited Holland to serve "because of the breadth of experience you have had in your career and the central role that you now play in American life."The task force will meet three times a year to review events, plan, exchange ideas and hear presentations from invited experts and community leaders.

At the inaugural meeting May 5 in New York City, members will discuss the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis in the West Bank of Gaza, Phelan said.

He said Christians and Jews in the United States are getting to know one another far better than in the past, and the purpose of the new task force is to help every generation continue "to strengthen the ties between our two communities."