I have heard of churches/gatherings who creatively read old sermons as the preaching for their services. Everyone knows this is not original material, and they happen to enjoy going through classic sermons. This was done in a couple of churches that were without a pastor, but wanted to be fed. I'm cool with that. I have also heard from preaching professors that a preacher will, and should not be afraid to, borrow from others. Illustrations, examples, etc. were said to be fair game.
I understand that as one prepares to preach or teach many influences enter the mind, and heart and one cannot always recall where a phrase or idea comes from when speaking to the people. In my estimation, this is not a problem. But until recently I had not heard of pastors being exhorted to simply reuse the sermons of popular preachers and forgo their own study and sermon preparation (and development in this area). Recently Steve Sjogren argued for this kind of approach to preaching and Dr. Ray Van Neste takes issue with it.
What are you hoping for when looking for a preacher? How important do you think it is for a pastor to preach his own sermons? Read both articles and leave your thoughts. I have some things I would like to say, but will have to come back later when I have time - I am busy preparing a message.