You say Ms. Winterson is secular? I hope so, because the excerpt you printed (for which this Times-bereft Yank thanks you) makes me cringe.
The fact that she has “African Church” and “savage outrage” in succeeding sentences, is just the sort of fodder conservatives need (and will use) to call all pro-LGBT folk (religious or secular) a bunch of racists (the “anal fixation” part, though likely true psychologically, is just impolitic in the mass media). More importantly, it misses the point: African Church outrage may have indigenous antecedents, but the extent to which it has been fomented, directed, and financially sponsored by non-Africans (e.g. Americans) cannot be underestimated.
Be that as it may, it is equally incorrect to say that this (the role of LGBTs in the Church) is an “issue relevant to none but a minority of Bible-thumping evangelicals,” for several reasons. On the most obvious level, no one can pretend that opposition to LGBTs in the worldwide AC isn’t a majority opinion (if not held as passionately as a loud minority would suggest). Moreover, I would argue that this issue has universal relevance for Christians: treatment of LGBTs—- especially in the Two-Thirds World—-is a test case for Christ’s command to serve “the least of these.” While we may resent the chaos and conflict that have come to the AC, it has been a necessary crisis: the breakdown that leads to break through .
[Just curious, Simon: what do you dislike about ECUSA’s website? I’ve always found it useful enough.]