Jealousy, greed, intrigue, betrayal and murder: all of these can be found in this Sunday's gospel passage from Matthew. To prepare us for this tale, the first lesson, from Isaiah, paints a pastoral vineyard scene and the disappointment of the owner when the crop fails. There's symbolism at every turn here and reading over these texts before you hear them at Mass will be very helpful.
So plan now to put aside some time to read this Sunday's scriptures and background material on them. Got kids? There's help for them, too, and giving them a "tease" of what they'll be hearing at Mass might just be the thing to prime them for listening rather than fidgeting during the liturgy of the Word.
(The image shows us a typical watchtower from a vineyard. During harvest time, the vineyard owner might camp in the tower with his family, keeping an eye out for those who might steal from him.)