Infographics and Ministry

Technology in Ministry: A Guide to Media Ministry

By Ministers, For Ministry 

A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words

Infographics and Ministry


Infographics? …I tried to sound intelligent.


I recently was in a conversation about ministry where the term ‘infographics’ was brought up.  The word sounded all high tech and new to me, but I tried to sound intelligent. I am just not as ‘up on computer things’ as some of my friends are. I was asked , “have you ever heard of  ‘infographics’? Had to admit….both parts of the word I recognized, but together? Probably some new thing on computers. I finally responded, “not really”. He quickly got me to the search engine to see it. I saw ‘images’ that were a bunch of squares with different pictures/etc that indicated specific information. Which IS what it sounds like: Info Graphics, or in other words, information via pictures of some kind, that give specific information on something specific. 

It’s as easy as a child’s toy


Infographics and Ministry



Then I fed him back the first analogy that came to mind of a children’s toy that had ‘buttons’ on it with pictures of different animals. When pressed, the cow picture button caused a “moo” sound. The cat picture button gave the information of the cat sound, “meow”, etc. Information via pictures. The pictures showed what animal would be represented. The information was ‘how do they sound’. After a silent pause, he says to me, “I have never heard it described quite that way”. And then he challenged me to write down how I would describe ‘Infographics’. How would I define it, in my own words. 


I am sure my friend figured that I would do some research on the subject before writing down my thoughts. But that just wouldn’t be enough fun. Perhaps I’ll do this again after I do the research! For now, I want to see how accurate or not I will be on what I write here, and what I learn about this later. I have been known to have a really keen ability to ‘perceive things’ that I really don’t have any real knowledge about. And then later, I wish I had written my thoughts down BEFORE I did the research and would see how I intuitively understood things in strange, but accurate ways. So here goes. And I’m brave – I am going to send this to my dear friend before I look and see if I sound like a fool or not! 

Get it? Info-Graphics. Ha!


Here is the way I, with my 2 minutes of research would define ‘Infographics’: “bulk amounts of information conveyed via a graphic. Get it? Info-Graphics! So, what is a ‘graphic’, I had to ask myself? It is an image, a picture or symbol or any other ‘small whatever’ (even if its 1 word or letter, occasionally. Depends.) What it ISN’T is the ‘bulk of information’ represented by the graphic image. 

Some simple examples would be the pretty much universally understood 1 person image known as PROFILE. Or if there are 2 of those head images, that usually means FRIENDS.  You go to the store and self-checkout and they use infographics to help you complete your transaction. The bank’s ATM does the same thing. 

My examples are pretty simple and basic, as I am not a computer tech person. Part of my interest in this topic was that maybe it was a ‘new’ avenue for me to explore, as I am still searching for my niche in life, maybe something more ‘productive’. 

Nothing New Under the Sun 


Infographics and Ministry

‘Anything-Graphics’ sounds computer-y to me. Sounds almost like ‘computer-graphics’. But before computers, there were graphics. We called them pictures, symbols, icons, you get the idea if you’re over 35 at least. Many of them are still in use today! They told us which restroom to use. They told us what ‘services’ were available at the next exit, such as gas, food, lodging, camping, etc. – all on 1 sign, and all on ‘symbols’ of some kind. A knife, fork and spoon meant FOOD. A sign with the images of an adult female and 2 small children running (on parts of the 5 freeway) are a warning of people,  may be trying to run across freeway to ‘freedom’. On the coast right below they have the same type sign with a single surfer with a surfer which means “watch out for surfers crossing ”. So, what’s so new about the transference of information without the use of a bunch of text? I have a theory: there is nothing new about it at all. Just as Solomon said, “there is nothing new under the sun”.


Way back in time, written language was not something that everyone had, as most of us do today. As a matter of fact, most people were illiterate. Story telling through pictures was not invented upon the advent of teaching young  children to read.  Stories of ancient times are found on walls of caves and pyramids. The early Christian Church found there ways around to their fellow brethren by the markings in the dirt telling them where ‘church’ was. The Catholic ‘stations of the cross’ are all in pictures, some elaborate, some very simple. The lengthy stories, however, are not written on the pictures. The graphics speak for themselves. No pun on words intended!

Infographics and Ministry


So then, my conclusion about what infographics is all about is this: that infographics is a modern day, computer friendly term that means “to convey information through pictures”.  Bigger and better, but still nothing totally new. As it has always been, a picture is worth a thousand words. Or, should that be, a thousand billion megabytes?




Below are a few examples of infographics made for ministry.  They were developed as a practice project by the media ministry team of the National Association of Christian Ministers.  Enjoy 🙂



Infographics and Ministry
Infographics and Ministry
Infographics and Ministry

Infographics and Ministry
Infographics and Ministry
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Infographics and Ministry
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