From the article:
Notable because it rejected tired, homophobic tropes in order to affirm a lesbian love affair, Desert Hearts also garnered several positive, high profile reviews from mainstream critics. (Roger Ebert called it a film of “undeniable power.”) Of watching the movie at a gay and lesbian film festival in 1995, Stacey wrote, “the audience was high on participation and frequently screamed with laughter and pleasure as the conventions of Hollywood romance, which had excluded them for so long, were being used in a lesbian context.
While filming the scene, there happened to be church bells ringing outside. Deitch got lucky.