The Bible is full of stories of God using day-to-day activities to position people to accomplish His will. David was shepherding when Samuel called for him and anointed him as king. A woman drawing water at a well encountered the Messiah. Ruth met her kinsman redeemer while gleaning in his field, and Joseph’s time in prison eventually led him to become second in command in Egypt.
We may see those stories as epic and far removed from us, but as believers we can often trace God’s hand through the seemingly mundane moments and unforeseen events in our lives. The story of Dr. Randy Guliuzza, ICR’s new President and Chief Operating Officer, is no exception. From a change in his high school schedule to a discovery in his college library, from his dedicated service in Iraq to his friendship with one of ICR’s early leaders, his life displays how God can weave all things—even those that seem coincidental or disconnected—together for His ultimate purposes.
Roller-Skating, Evangelism, and a Changed Life
Regular Acts & Facts readers will be familiar with Dr. Guliuzza’s articles, but there’s a lot more to the story of this man who is taking the helm as ICR’s new leader. Dr. Guliuzza—known to many ICR staff members as Dr. G—grew up in a close-knit family on an Air Force base in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Though military families are known for frequent relocations, his family stayed in Cheyenne throughout his childhood. His mother was a homemaker and dedicated mother to her three children, and his dad was a hardworking Air Force master sergeant.
When asked about his upbringing, Dr. G said, “I had a great home, with great parents, loving parents. But neither one of them really knew the Lord and did not teach us biblical things or even go to church, so that was pretty much left to us to decide by the time we reached high school. I had a great home, but we were missing that Christian element.”
In high school, Dr. G was a big fan of woodshop class, held every day during lunchtime. But due to a change in the schedule one year, he transferred his interests from woodshop to a girl named June sitting at the lunch table. Unknown to him, she had recently become a Christian and was passionate about her newfound faith. He asked her out on a date, and she agreed to go roller-skating with him as long as he went to church with her the next day.
Viewing this as a guaranteed second date, he complied. He said, “She went to a good, Bible-believing church where I heard the gospel. Between her constant witnessing on every single date, the Bible she gave me for graduation from high school, the great teaching I was receiving from Sunday school classes and preaching from the pulpit at her church, I repented of my sin and came to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ right after I graduated from high school in 1977.”
And what happened with his bold, Bible-believing skating partner? She’s now his wife, and they’ve been serving the Lord happily together for 42 years.
Magazine in the Moody Library
Higher education has played a significant role in Dr. G’s life. After high school, he moved to South Dakota to study mining engineering at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology. He took a lot of geology courses, but after the second year he and June felt the Lord was leading them into ministry, so they transferred to Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. Dr. G. said, “What a change that was!...It was really transformational in my life with Moody. I picked up so much education in theology, but mainly I read for the first time the Acts & Facts newsletter, and that changed my life.”
That newsletter later became the creation science magazine ICR publishes today. Dr. G had always had an interest in science. In fact, according to his mother he was interested in science before he even knew what it was. She often related the story of him at two or three years old sneaking off to another room to take apart her sewing machine. “She said I would methodically disassemble it, laying all the parts out in a row piece by piece, and much to her pleasure at my interest in science and her dismay at my disassembling her machine, that has always been the case. In fact, science for me has always been my favorite course growing up.”
But finding a copy of Acts & Facts in the Moody library changed his view of science and the Bible, and eventually the course of his life. Growing up in a secular culture, he was taught evolutionary theory and believed in it strongly even after he became a Christian—that is, until discussions with fellow Moody students began to raise questions in his mind.
His increasing skepticism about evolution was cemented with the discovery of Acts & Facts. He encountered what he said were “two very clear articles, well-written and very concise.” One was about the origin of life and the other about how fossils found today are almost identical to their living counterparts and haven’t changed in supposedly millions of years. He said, “It changed my thinking about evolution—not over a long conversion but in a moment….I sat stunned in my chair thinking, ‘Evolution is wrong—I’ve been lied to,’ and I became devoted and passionate about creation science ministry on the spot.”
In the final year before his graduation from Moody Bible Institute, he needed advice about his next step in starting to work in creation science ministry. Eager to get going, he called the operator in the San Diego area to get ICR founder Dr. Henry Morris’ number. Dr. Morris encouraged him to finish his engineering education and indicated that the recruitment and training of younger scientists was one of his highest priorities.
So, at Dr. Morris’ recommendation, Dr. G returned to the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology and finished his mining engineering degree. He then worked as an engineer for 10 years in the Navy on the islands of Sicily and Guam, where he managed the construction of an ammunition wharf that’s still in operation today.
An Unexpected Friendship
From that point on, many of Dr. G’s educational decisions were guided by the advice of ICR’s early leaders, who knew of his desire to ultimately devote himself to creation ministry. At an ICR ministry camp, he met creation scientist and renowned debater Dr. Duane Gish. They ended up talking for several hours, and over the next 10 years he continued to cross paths with Dr. Gish, sometimes at events but also at the airport or other unexpected places. “We became fast friends, he took a liking to me, and he began to groom me for the creation science ministry.”
Dr. Gish became his most influential mentor. Dr. G said, “It was through the fact that one man was interested enough and dedicated enough that he would invest his time in me, and he pointed me toward ICR, giving me advice all along the way.” At Dr. Gish’s recommendation, he transferred to medical school at the University of Minnesota. Upon completion of his Doctor of Medicine degree, he joined the Air Force and served as 28th Bomb Wing Flight Surgeon and Chief of Aerospace Medicine for about nine years.
Saving Lives and Battling for Truth
Dr. Guliuzza was sent to Iraq several times. During one deployment, he served at an Air Force emergency medical clinic stationed on the airport runway in downtown Baghdad. He treated casualties from the battlefield and stabilized them so they could be transported to the hospital for more critical and long-term care. On another assignment, he assisted with the flight transfer of those patients to the hospital in Germany. Thanks to medical and technological advancements, transport was so rapid that he and his colleagues were able to save many servicemen with injuries that would have guaranteed their deaths in previous wars.
When asked what he learned about God while he worked in such extreme conditions, Dr. G said, “It revealed to me that everyone eventually becomes a believer in God in those situations. Clearly, not everybody is a Christian who is transferred to Iraq…but for people who have to go out every day and mostly at night—we did a lot of our fighting at night—it can be a frightening situation. And so I met a lot of those soldiers, not necessarily in the medical clinic, but I met them in the chapel.”
In fact, at the request of the Air Force chaplain, Dr. G. taught a series of messages on creation science. His topics included the importance of the doctrine of creation to the church’s mission, a critique of the evidence for evolution, the design features of the human visual and reproductive systems, and a session on geological time. It was well-attended by many soldiers who were intrigued to hear things about science and the Bible that they had never heard in public school. According to Dr. G, being at war “was certainly a time where they took God seriously.”
He was able to introduce several soldiers to the Lord, including an Iraqi physician who was under his mentorship to become a flight surgeon. Dr. G said, “I was able to talk with him at length one day and point him to the Lord Jesus Christ. About a year later, after I transferred home, I got a call from him. He was anxious to tell me he had become a Christian.”
When Dr. G returned home from his deployment, Dr. Gish heard about his series of creation science messages in Iraq, and ICR ran a feature story about it in the February 2006 issue of Acts & Facts,1 the very publication that had initially stirred his interest in creation science.
During his time practicing as a physician in the Air Force, Dr. G earned a Master of Public Health from Harvard University. Some of the most useful experience he gained in that was analyzing technical papers, mostly medical, to find where the authors’ research was good and where it was flawed. He met with then-ICR President Dr. John Morris, who allowed him to do a speaking tour for ICR at various churches in northern Texas and southern Oklahoma. He also participated in some debates that Dr. Gish had arranged.
Examining Life with an Engineer’s Eye
Though creation ministry was Dr. G’s long-term goal, his plan was to start working for ICR around the time he was eligible to retire from the military. When the wing commander approached him about the next job to consider after his current assignment, the opportunity would have extended his time in the Air Force several years past his eligible retirement date. Dr. G strongly considered it, but around that time June became seriously ill with an aggressive cancer. Since ministering with ICR was a goal they both shared and June had made a number of sacrifices in order for Dr. G to prepare to work for ICR, he decided to retire from the Air Force so she could experience at least some time in the creation science ministry—even if it was only for a brief while. After visiting and interviewing with ICR CEO Dr. Henry Morris III, Dr. G accepted a position at ICR in 2008. Thankfully, since that time June has been in remission.
Dr. G has spent most of the last 12 years as ICR’s National Representative, writing for ICR publications, contributing to ICR video projects, and developing a theory of biological design to explain how creatures rapidly adapt to changing environments. Part of the groundbreaking nature of the theory is that he’s conducting the research from a biblical perspective rather than an evolutionary one and viewing biological systems with an engineer’s eye rather than the expectation that organisms developed their traits through trial and error. His unique combination of education and experience has helped him greatly in this endeavor. He said:
All through the time I was going to medical school, I believe I was looking at functions very differently than many of my colleagues. As I was going through, I could clearly see systems that were operating by engineering principles, and I could see a really, really tight correlation between the function of biological entities and the operation of really sophisticated manmade design....The Lord knew what He was doing through all those years of education and getting those degrees in theology, engineering, and medicine that have helped me in this research.
In addition to his other work, Dr. G has been a prolific speaker at churches, conferences, and seminars throughout the United States. Since he personally experienced a revolution in his beliefs about God, science, and the Bible, he is well able to connect with those who are struggling to reconcile their own beliefs.
His credentials also help him to dismantle barriers to faith for those who think that belief in God must be anti-science. Even with his extensive education in scientific fields at secular universities, Dr. G said, “My view of science has probably come down, realizing that it can be abused, and my view of the Bible has gone up, recognizing that it really, really is accurate, and it is so full of wisdom that I just hold it in awe and respect.”
Dr. G believes that “the doctrine of creation is the basis for every important doctrine that we have in the Bible.” He said, “The Bible tells us who God is. The Bible states right at the very beginning that God is the Creator. ‘In the beginning God created.’ So, first and foremost, above all things, God is the Creator and the Originator of all things. So, we build from that.”
As he takes the helm as ICR President and Chief Operating Officer, Dr. G’s greatest hope in the coming years is to see a second creationist revival much like the creationist movement initiated by Dr. Henry Morris when he co-wrote The Genesis Flood with Dr. John Whitcomb. “[Dr. Morris] put together a model which explained geology so clearly, so concisely, so cleanly that it was compelling for people to believe it. And it helped pastors have confidence in the Bible.”
Since ICR has already developed a strong model of geology, Dr. G. wants to see the ministry focus on continuing to establish a strong model of biology. When asked about his vision for the future, he said:
I would love to see ICR become a leader in helping pastors and Christian leaders see biology in a completely different light, in a way that they have never seen it before, and that it will build their faith and strengthen their belief in the Bible as authoritative and accurate. And that will help them to lead their people to completely trust it and to obey it….If we can have ICR leading the way in a second creationist revival, and we’re doing that by developing a solid theory of biological design, that would be a major accomplishment.
In viewing Dr. Guliuzza’s journey from the days he took apart his mother’s sewing machine to the launch of his leadership at ICR, it’s amazing to see how God has brought his gifts, education, relationships, and experience together to make him such a good fit to lead ICR into the next chapter. God is truly weaving all things for good, and we look forward to seeing the good He will bring through ICR, Dr. Guliuzza, and creation ministry in the coming years.2
- Staff Writer. 2006. Creation and ICR in Iraq. Acts & Facts. 35 (2).
- Go to ICR.org/meet-dr-g to access the full podcast interview with Dr. Guliuzza, a video of his personal testimony, and more.
* Ms. Hardy is an editor at the Institute for Creation Research.